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Health and Safety for Landlords

Thursday 29 June 2017

On 29 June 2017 Teresa attended a meeting of the Otago Property Investors Association on health and safety issues for landlords. It is clear that there are significant issues for residential and commercial landlords to consider. It is for them to ensure that all their property managers have identified to their tenants any risks relating to the property or plant and equipment provided by the landlord to the tenant, and minimised those risks where practicable. If the landlord organises any tradespeople to go on the property, again it is the landlord’s responsibility to ensure that the property will be a safe environment for tradespeople and the tenants. Consideration of the proposed use of the premises is therefore important in the consideration of risk.


The balcony collapse of the student flat in Castle Street in 2016 from an overcrowded local concert was a salutary lesson on health and safety. In that case, it appears that the balcony was designed to carry 6 or 7 people, when it was bearing 20-30 people at the time. The balcony was built according to Building Code standards and there did not appear to be any decay problems associated with the balcony. There is no question of any liability which could be attributed to the landlord. For future reference, landlords renting out to students may wish to identify potential risks and ensure that they have been explained to the tenants and recorded.

KEYWORDS: Health and safety, landlord’s liability
Otago Chamber of Commerce Dunedin Shanghai Association