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New Smoke Alarm Laws Victoria

The recently changed Residential Tenancy Regulations have made it mandatory for landlords to conduct regular gas and electric safety checks on their rental properties. Gas and electric safety checks must be done at least every 2 years and smoke alarms must be tested annually.

Landlords need to act now to comply with the changes in these laws. Failure to comply with the legislation can attract penalties. At First Call Electrical, we can help you meet your legal obligations. Book an electrical safety check and smoke alarm check with us today.

Smoke alarm regulations in Victoria

Smoke alarms should be installed in all houses, units, flats and townhouses. All buildings constructed after 1st August 1997 must have hard-wired smoke alarms.

For a high level of protection, interconnected smoke alarms should be installed in living rooms, hallways and bedrooms. In case a fire starts in one room, the smoke alarm in that room will be activated and trigger all the smoke alarms in the house.

Rental Providers/ Landlords

  • Landlords are now called rental providers
  • Smoke alarms should be installed correctly and be in working order
  • Smoke alarms should be tested at least every 12 months or according to the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Batteries need to be replaced whenever required
  • If the smoke alarms are not working, they should be repaired or replaced urgently
  • At the time of leasing the property, it should meet the minimum rental standards
  • The rental agreement may include a term setting out safety-related activities such as smoke alarm testing

Renters ( Tenants)

  • Tenants are now called renters
  • Renters should be provided with written information on the functioning of smoke alarms, how to test and report any issues with them
  • If the smoke alarm is not working, the renters should inform the landlord as soon as they become aware.
  • Repairs to smoke alarms are treated as urgent repairs
  • The renters must not remove, deactivate or interfere with the smoke alarms. If a renter or their visitor interferes with the smoke alarm, it is a breach of duty and the rental provider can give the renter a notice to vacate.

Smoke alarms should be installed or repaired by a qualified electrician. It is the responsibility of the rental provider to ensure the work is carried out by an accredited electrician.

Electrical Safety Checks for Landlords Victoria

In addition to the annual smoke alarm maintenance, an electrical safety check is mandatory on all landlord-provided electrical appliances, fittings and installations as per the new legislation. The safety check must be carried out every 2 years by a licensed electrician. A detailed record must be kept which includes:

  • Date of the electric safety check
  • Name, License and Registration number of the electrician
  • Results of the check

If not done within the last 2 years, an electrical safety check is required as soon as possible. Renters can request the date of the last electrical safety check and a copy of the record should be provided within 7 days of the written request.

Read more - Electrical Safety Check Residential Tenancies VIC Update

Need a smoke alarm check for your Melbourne property?

Request a smoke alarm check-in with one of our licenced electricians at 1300 016 671 or complete our quick online electrician booking request today. Let our reliable Melbourne electricians take care of your property and help you meet your obligations.


Smoke Alarms and Fire Safety

What Landlords Must Know About The New Smoke Alarm Laws In Victoria?