Provision of lighting | The Tenants' Voice
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Provision of lighting

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124 views 2 replies latest reply: 24 July 2017


We recently let a property for a year, which has no lights in a number of rooms. It has plenty of sockets to plug lamps in, but no ceiling lights. When I inspected the property, I saw swithches near doors and assumed that it had recessed ceiling lights. I didn’t glance up, the ceilings are rather tall and I was too focused on storage space etc. to notice. Is there an obligation for landlords to provide lamps if there are no other lights in the room? I have never come across something like this in the UK…

Many thanks in advance for all replies.


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There is no official information specific to lights. However, by all standards, the lights themselves are a responsibility of the landlord and the light bulbs are a responsibility of the tenant. 

Whether your landlord can rent a property without lighting installed in half the rooms is beyond me, but likely they can, as they HAVE.

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It depends where you are-the landlord MUST let homes that meet the ‘minimum tolerale standard’ – see below


Does my house meet the tolerable standard?

The Council’s Environmental Protection Team will give advice and inspect homes to identify properties which are not fit to live in or do not meet the ‘tolerable standard.’ They will determine the most satisfactory course of action that needs to be taken with these properties.

Tolerable standard

The Housing (Scotland) Act 1987 defines the tolerable standard as a list of minimum requirements that a house has to meet in order to be fit to live in.
A house meets the tolerable standard if it:

  • is structurally stable
  • is substantially free from rising or penetrating damp
  • has satisfactory provision for natural and artificial lighting, for ventilation and for heating
  • has an adequate piped supply of wholesome water available within the house
  • has a sink with a satisfactory supply of both hot and cold water within the house
  • has a water closet (toilet) available for the exclusive use of the occupants of the house and suitably located within the house
  • has an effective system for the drainage and disposal of foul and surface water
  • has satisfactory facilities for the cooking of food within the house
  • has satisfactory access to all external doors and outbuildings.

The tolerable standard will be amended when provisions of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 come into force to include two new requirements. A house must then also:-

  • have satisfactory thermal insulation
  • have an electrical installation that is adequate and safe to use
  • to have a “waterless closet” will also become an acceptable alternative in certain circumstances.

Where houses fail to meet these requirements, a ‘Closing’ or ‘Demolition Order’ may be served on the owner to prevent the occupation of a property.

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