Shared housing

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Please note: This safety advice is offered as guidance only. If in doubt, Get out, Stay out and get the Fire and Rescue Service out!

When you are thinking about moving into shared or rented accommodation, fire safety may not be a priority. However there can be lethal dangers present.

  • All electrical wiring should be safe
  • There should be a basic fire warning system
  • The escape route should be free from obstacles and materials that burn easily
  • Means of escape and fire precautions should be in good repair
  • You should be able to open exit doors without a key
  • There should be fire extinguishers and fire blankets in shared kitchens
  • Furniture and furnishings should be fire resistant and in good repair

Has your landlord arranged an Electrical Installation safety check lately? Is there an annual visual check of socket outlets, switches and lampholders etc.?


Look for danger signs

  • Hot plugs and sockets, fuses that blow for no reason, flickering lights, scorch marks on plugs or sockets, bare wiring
  • Make sure sockets are not overloaded. One socket - one plug. Unwind extension leads fully
  • Turn off as many electrical appliances as you can before you go to sleep and close doors
  • Check your landlord has a maintenance programme for gas heaters and appliances. Chimneys and flues should be cleaned regularly

Alarm systems

  • Make sure you can hear the alarm
  • Smoke detectors should be connected to the mains with a battery back-up in case of power failure
  • Only activate the alarm system in an emergency

Further information

Community Fire Safety

Telephone: 01743 260 200