Standards for rented property

Landlords must ensure that private rented property meets a minimum physical standard. This is the Repairing Standard.

From 1 March 2024, new guidance outlines the changes to the standard.

Landlords must carry out a pre-tenancy check of their property to identify work required to meet the Repairing Standard. They must notify tenants of any such work.

Landlords must repair and maintain their property throughout the tenancy. This includes a duty to make good any damage caused by work. On becoming aware of a defect, landlords must complete the work within a reasonable time.

If you have told your landlord about a problem and they don't agree it is a problem, or you have not addressed it to your satisfaction, you can refer it to the First Tier Tribunal for Scotland.

The tribunal has the power to require a landlord to carry out work necessary to meet the standard.

Tolerable Standard

The Tolerable Standard is a basic level of repair a property must meet to make it fit for a person to live in. We can force the landlord to carry out work to bring your home up to the tolerable standard.

The Below Tolerable Standard (BTS) Strategy ensures we meet the requirements of Section 10 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006.

It states that local authorities must set out a strategy to address housing that is below tolerable standard. We have a duty to improve, close or demolish houses which do not meet the tolerable standard.

We measure the basic level of repair against 12 criteria. Failure against any of these renders a property below tolerable standard. A below tolerable standard property is not acceptable as living accommodation.

The Strategy covers:

  • the extent of BTS housing
  • how we will raise awareness of, identify and address BTS housing
  • how we will monitor the evidence to inform and update the Strategy

The BTS Strategy will help improve the condition of housing across all tenures and helps:

  • reduce the number of houses that are below the Tolerable Standard
  • prevent more houses from falling below the Tolerable Standard. It will do this by encouraging homeowners to repair, maintain and improve their homes

If you are aware of a property that you believe to be below the tolerable standard and if after the owner/landlord has been notified of the problem:

  • it is not attended to satisfactorily
  • or if there is disagreement about whether there is a problem

contact the Council’s Environmental Health Team:

Report your concerns using our enquiry form

From March 2019, the Tolerable Standard became part of the Repairing Standard. This means that if a property fails the Tolerable Standard it automatically fails the Repairing Standard.

A home may not be fit to live in if:

  • it has problems with rising or penetrating damp
  • it's not structurally stable (for example, it might be subsiding)
  • it does not have enough ventilation, natural and artificial light or heating
  • it's not insulated well enough
  • it does not have an acceptable fresh water supply, or a sink with hot and cold water
  • it does not have an indoor toilet, a fixed bath or shower, and a wash basin with hot and cold water
  • it does not have a good drainage and sewerage system
  • the electric supply does not meet safety regulations
  • it does not have a proper entrance
  • there are no cooking facilities. This does not mean the landlord has to provide a cooker, but there must be somewhere suitable for a tenant to install their own

If, after a landlord has been notified of any problem, it is not attended to satisfactorily or if there is disagreement about whether or not there is a problem, then the tenant can contact the Council’s Environmental Health Team. Report your concerns to ACCESSLine on 03452 777 778.