Fire risk assessment cost

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    Fire risk assessment cost

    I am looking at having a professional fire risk assessment done. 4 flats in a converted Georgian town house. I got a grant from the Council some years ago to help with the costs of fire doors, mains alarm system, smoke detectors etc. These are maintained properly as are fire extinguishers.

    However, things move on and I feel it may be sensible to look again at all this to ensure all is currently in order. I've had one quote of £450 which I thought was expensive. Is that generally the cost of these things ?

    Depends on the persons qualifications. £450 isn't far off for someone who is on a register. It's supply and demand, good quality assessors are in demand. I have friends who run companies who are struggling to find competent people.


      I am getting conflicting advice as to where an assessor needs to assess. For a building split into 4 flats, all of which I own and let out - do I:

      1. Have the Assessment done on the whole building including flats.

      2. Only the Common Parts plus the doors to the flats.

      Different Assessors are giving me different advice - one says the internal parts of the flat are the tenants dwelling and are not covered by legislation. I have smoke alarms etc in them, anyway - but is this correct - that an assessor doesn't need to enter each flat ?


        Is this a section 257 HMO?

        If not, the requirement for the common areas is under different legislation from that for the interiors of the flats. The former explicitly requires a fire risk assessment, whilst, for the latter, it is just the case that it may be difficult to show that you have taken adequate precautions without having done one.

        For a section 257 HMO, I'm fairly sure everything has to have one.

        Even a common areas only assessment will consider the walls of the flats, as well as the doors, but will be very brief on that point, if the flats are purpose built. In your case, they are not purpose built, but if you meet the conditions for not being a section 257 HMO, that would indicate the walls will be a very quick item.


          Hopefully I can give you the definitive answer.

          My answer is is based on 15 years as an inspecting officer in the fire service and 3 years as the fire safety manager for a large housing association. We had just over 1000 properties such as yours.

          The minimum requirement is a type 1 FRA. (Communal areas). This includes doors as they have a significant impact on the fire safety within the building. Although, a type 1 FRA only requires the assessor to sample the doors not assess all of them. The assessor then makes a judgement.

          The internal areas of flats do not fall under the fire safety order but do come under the housing act. There is an exceptions to this -

          Where the item item in the flat is provided for the safety of others. This is generally restricted to the fire alarm system in conversions (such as yours) and the internal lobby in purpose built flats.

          Other considerations - External fire spread (post Grenfell) and external balconies, the assessor should take into account anything stored on balconies that would encourage fire spread.

          Conversion aren't to difficult to complete. Look at the examples D10 or D11 of in Lacors


            Thanks for the replies.

            So - as each flat have a sounder and a smoke alarm (hard wired) does that mean the assessment should include internal areas ?


              Having a communal alarm system at all generally means that the flats are not adequately isolated from the communal areas.

              Typically, in this situation, the smoke alarm in the flat should not be connected to the communal system. (Typically the sounder is attached to a heat alarm.)


                Originally posted by Knocker View Post
                Thanks for the replies.

                So - as each flat have a sounder and a smoke alarm (hard wired) does that mean the assessment should include internal areas ?
                Because your flats were converted before 1991 they won't have been provided with adequate separation between the flats. To compensate for this you need a detection system. This consists of -

                A detection system in the communal areas (Smoke) technical spec is LD2 Grade A system to BS5839 Part 6. This should have an interconnected heat detector in each flat. The purpose is to raise the alarm throughout the building. The must be a decibel level of 75 at the bedhead.

                Also, each flat must have a standalone smoke detector in the hallway. This is to alert the person in the flat of fire origin only. This would have decibel level of 83 at the open door to the bedroom.


                  As you are renting the flats on short leases, you would be responsible for their fire safety, even if they were in an purpose built flat. You need to do some sort of risk assessment to ensure their safety.


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