Are you a homeowner interested in learning more about asbestos rules for residential properties?
Asbestos rules differ for residential and non-residential properties.
The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 (CAR) are aimed at non-domestic properties, although they may also apply to some common
spaces in residential buildings.
The following are the asbestos regulations that must be followed as outlined in the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012: • Regulation 11
(Asbestos exposure prevention or reduction)• Regulation 15 (Actions to be taken in the event of an accident, incident, or emergency)•
Regulation 16 (Action in the event of an accident, incident, or emergency)(Duty to prevent or reduce the spread of asbestos)
• Houses converted into apartments (HMOs) with multiple occupants ” access, circulation, and storage spaces such as the entry hall,
stairway, and roof space
• Garages/parking spots that are not assigned to a single individual-communal areas.
• Apartment blocks ” Common areas such as the foyer, lift, stairs, and lobby; boiler and plant-room, roof space, communal yard, garden,
storage rooms, bike shelter, and external outbuilding; boiler and plant-room, roof space, communal yard, garden, storage rooms, bike
shelter, and external outbuilding; boiler and plant-room, roof space, communal yard, garden, storerooms, bike shelter, and external
• Flats above a store or office, with or without a separate entrance, have access and circulation areas.
• Hotel, guest house, hall of residence, hostel (private and public), and care home ” Guest rooms and common areas (e.g., lobby, lift,
stairs, circulation areas), store rooms, roof space, and outbuildings
• Structures for agricultural farms
One thing to keep in mind is that homeowners who live in domestic houses aren’t legally accountable for any asbestos-related hazards to
contractors because they aren’t doing any work themselves.
As a result, when working on domestic properties, it is the contractor’s responsibility to follow the Asbestos Regulations in order to protect
themselves and the homeowners, or in the case of rented properties, it is the duty holder’s responsibility (the manager/landlord/caretaker
of the building responsible for any repairs).
The broad obligations in Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 also safeguard homeowners from any dangers that
may emerge as a result of work being done in their houses.
Are landlords liable for asbestos in residential properties?
As a landlord of residential premises, you are responsible for the structural maintenance of the building, which means you are the
obligation holder, and you must handle asbestos in all buildings you own in line with CAR laws.
A landlord owes it to their tenants, guests, and tradesmen/contractors who may be performing maintenance or repairs on the property to
keep them safe.
Then any contractors who will be doing our repairs must be informed about the presence of asbestos and where it is situated.
If a landlord fails to do so, the HSE may pursue legal action against them.
A landlord must hire a qualified contractor to carry out any repairs or other maintenance to the property in addition to conducting a risk
They must have appropriate experience dealing with asbestos-containing materials and demonstrate adequate understanding to be
Contractors must also be adequately trained in working with asbestos, which means they must have undergone basic asbestos
awareness training within the last 12 months at the very least.
A non-licensed or licenced contractor will be required to accomplish the task, depending on the kind of asbestos, the quantity, and the
duration of the work.
Please see the HSE website for examples of different forms of asbestos work that are classified as non-licensed and licenced.
Landlords are responsible for managing asbestos in residential properties in line with asbestos rules.
What about contractors who work in private homes?
The asbestos laws for work on residential premises say that unless you have particular contractual responsibilities or exert some level of
control over the location, you have no direct obligations under the responsibility to manage regulations (regulation 4).
This implies that the person in charge of the building (s) or site must tell you about the locations and conditions of any ACMs on site
before work begins so that you may prepare properly and guarantee that the job is done safely.
In these situations, after work begins on site, if you come across any unexpected asbestos as a contractor, you must immediately notify
the duty holder.
If it is recognised that the activity to be done may disturb asbestos, CAR 2012 will apply in its entirety (apart from regulation 4 duty to
Remember that CAR 2012 rule 4 only applies to contractors who have caretaker responsibilities for asbestos risk management.