Contact Information

 0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council,
Allerdale House,
CA14 3YJ


Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS)

The Housing Act 2004 introduced a new way for Local Authorities to assess housing conditions in England and Wales. The legislation replaces the old housing fitness standard and came into force on 6 April 2006.

The risk assessment approach called the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) enables Council Officers to identify hazards in dwellings and to recommend works to remove or minimise those hazards.

The HHSRS will be used to assess conditions in all private properties including those that are owner occupied, rented to single people and families and houses in multiple occupation. (HMOs)

Properties will be assessed against 29 potential hazards, which addresses deficiencies associated with excess cold, falls on stairs, noise and damp and mould growth. The assessment method aims to make homes healthier and safer and tackles hazards the fitness standard could not deal with, or deals with inadequately.

When a hazard is identified in a property, two tests have to be applied:

  1. What is the likelihood of a dangerous occurrence as a result of the hazard?
  2. If there is a dangerous occurrence, what would be the likely outcome?

The likelihood and the severity of the outcome combine to generate a hazard score. Hazards scores are divided into 10 bands, with band A being the most serious and band J the least serious. Hazards which fall into bands A – C are called Category 1 hazards and those in band D – J are category 2 hazards.

How is it enforced and that are the penalties?

If the Local Authority discovers a Category 1 hazard in a property, it has to take the most appropriate course of action. The Council also has a discretionary power to deal with Category 2 hazards by means of enforcement action.

Local Authorities are advised to try and deal with issues informally at first, however if unsuccessful the Council may be left with no alternative but to pursue enforcement action, which will involve the Council serving legal notices on the owner and /or manager of the property, and require them to carry out certain works in a specific time scale.

The Housing Act 2004 enables local authorities to make a reasonable charge as a means of recovering certain expenses incurred in the serving of notices. The expenses are in connection with the inspection of premises, the subsequent consideration of any action to be taken and any notices. Allerdale Borough Council has set the fee at £256.25 per notice or order made.

A property owner who feels an assessment is wrong can discuss the matter with the inspector and ultimately will be able to challenge an enforcement decision at the Residential Property Tribunal

It is an offence not to comply with a statutory notice, which could lead to a fine of up to £5000.

Landlord's Manual

The Landlord's Manual is a general guide giving landlords the basic information they need to manage rented accommodation. A copy can be downloaded from the downloadable documents section below.

If you require more information/guidance as to whether your property needs improvements to comply with HHSRS requirements, please contact Allerdale Housing Services on 01900 702570 or email

Downloadable Documents

All documents open in a new window.
File nameSizeApproximate Download time
Adobe PDF format - download the viewerThe Housing Health and Safety Rating System in PDF format1507 Kb3 mins 35 secs @ 56k, 6 secs @ 2mb
Adobe PDF format - download the viewerRepairs - A guide for landlords and tenants in PDF format282 Kb40 secs @ 56k, 1 sec @ 2mb
Adobe PDF format - download the viewerMaking your premises safe from fire in PDF format1031 Kb2 mins 27 secs @ 56k, 4 secs @ 2mb
Adobe PDF format - download the viewerLandlords guide to electrical safety in PDF format2182 Kb5 mins 12 secs @ 56k, 9 secs @ 2mb
Adobe PDF format - download the viewerEnergy Performance Certificates - A Landlord's Guide in PDF format95 Kb14 secs @ 56k, 0 secs @ 2mb
Adobe PDF format - download the viewerLandlord Manual in PDF format549 Kb1 min 18 secs @ 56k, 2 secs @ 2mb

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Contact us

0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ