The Tolerable Standard

Ensuring Housing Standards in Scotland

The Tolerable Standard, defined in the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006, establishes the minimum acceptable requirements for housing in Scotland. It outlines legal obligations for landlords and local authorities regarding housing standards.

Key Components of the Tolerable Standard

  1. Freedom from dampness and condensation.
  2. Adequate provision for ventilation and heating.
  3. Access to natural light and ventilation.
  4. Adequate space and amenities.
  5. Safe and satisfactory electrical supply and installation.
  6. Safe and satisfactory gas and other fuel installations.
  7. Effective sound insulation.
  8. General safety.

Landlord Responsibilities

Landlords in Scotland are legally required to ensure their properties meet the Tolerable Standard. Local authorities enforce this standard and can take action against non-compliant landlords.

Enforcement Process

  • If a property falls below the Tolerable Standard, an improvement notice may be served on the landlord.
  • Failure to comply may lead to further enforcement actions, including property closure and tenant eviction.

Your Home and the Tolerable Standard

Your home may not meet the Tolerable Standard if it has issues like rising or penetrating damp, structural instability, insufficient ventilation, heating, lighting, or cooking facilities. Safety concerns, inadequate insulation, and lacking essential amenities also contribute to a below-standard rating.

Requirements for Your Home

Upon moving in and throughout your tenancy, your home should:

  1. Have an acceptable fresh water supply.
  2. Include a sink with hot and cold water.
  3. Provide an indoor toilet.
  4. Have a fixed bath or shower.
  5. Feature a good drainage and sewerage system.
  6. Possess a proper entrance.
  7. Be equipped with suitable smoke, fire, and carbon monoxide alarms.

Below Tolerable Standard

In the UK, a property deemed “below tolerable standard” fails to meet minimum requirements for human habitation. Local authorities can serve notices and take enforcement actions, such as improvement notices or emergency works, to rectify issues. The goal is to ensure all properties meet basic standards of safety, health, and habitability for tenants and occupants.