Safety standards for furniture and appliances

Damaged or broken furniture and appliances can be a health and safety risk.

Responsibility for furniture and appliance safety

Your landlord has a legal responsibility to make sure any appliances, furniture and furnishings they provide in your home are safe and fit to use.

Find out more about housing standards in:

Furniture and furnishings fire safety rules

Furniture in your home should be fire resistant.

This includes:

  • sofas
  • armchairs
  • sofa beds
  • nursery furniture
  • mattresses
  • pillows and cushions

Furniture made before 1950 is excluded.

Furniture that is upholstered, has a filling or cover fabric must have a label to show that it meets fire safety standards. This applies to both new and second-hand furniture.

Landlords can be prosecuted if any furniture they provide with the tenancy doesn't meet legal standards.

Carpets and curtains are covered by different regulations, but the law requires that all products for sale are safe.

You are responsible for the condition of your own furniture and furnishings.

Gas and electrical appliances

Your landlord is responsible for the safety of all gas appliances they provide.

Your landlord has a legal duty to make sure that their electrical appliances are maintained in a safe condition throughout the tenancy.

You are responsible for the safety of any appliances you bring into your home.

Report faulty furniture and appliances

Report repair problems to your landlord if any items in your home become damaged, dangerous or unusable. This can happen through ordinary wear and tear.

Don't use any furniture or appliance if you think it's unsafe.

Find out how to report repairs to a:

Your landlord should arrange to fix or replace broken or damaged items if the damage wasn't your fault. Your landlord isn't allowed to charge you for this.

Complain to trading standards

You can complain to trading standards if your landlord won't fix faulty appliances and furniture in your home.

You can complain about:

  • faulty gas appliances
  • furniture that doesn't have a label saying it meets fire safety regulations
  • dangerous wiring on electrical equipment

Trading standards can take legal action against your landlord.

To complain to trading standards, contact the Citizens Advice consumer helpline.

Complain to environmental health

You can complain to the council’s environmental health department if conditions in your home are dangerous or a risk to health.

Last updated 31 May 2018 | © Shelter

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