British Gas Home Care Policies

by Readers Question

9:51 AM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

British Gas Home Care Policies

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British Gas Home Care Policies

Hi, I have 4 properties all with British Gas Home care policies for central heating breakdown. The renewal premiums appear to be 10% up on last year.

I have been on the phone and argued successfully for a discount but would like to look at better value alternatives. The cost for a 2 bedroom flat with breakdown cover for boiler and CH cover plus landlords annual gas safety certificate is £291.00.

Please let me know if you can recommend any national companies that provide this service.

Many thanks

Ian



Comments

Neil Patterson

9:53 AM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

I find Homecare reliable for breakdowns, but British Gas Twice the cost as independents to fit new boilers!

Ray Davison

11:25 AM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

You have 4 properties so that's £1200 per year. I would just self insure then use local tradesmen who are less expensive and much more flexible regarding appointments

Laura Delow

12:20 PM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

I have 15 Homecare Policies with British Gas covering Boiler/Central Heating/Plumbing/Drains & Electrics plus Gas Safety Checks & on previously comparing the cost/cover with elsewhere, although other providers are more often than not cheaper & on the surface appear very comprehensive, I have still stayed with BGas when drilling down in to the detail of their terms & conditions.
Firstly I have an excess on each BGas policy of £50 as the premium without an excess is usually 2-3 x higher & unless I exceed 2-3 call-outs per annum, I am quids in with an excess.
Secondly I do not take appliance cover except for my home. This is because it is cheaper to go with Domestic & General for Washing Machines & Tumble Driers than BGas & if can't be fixed, the machine is replaced (had this happen twice. I do not however insure cookers or fridge freezers as fewer working parts & less likely to go wrong.
With BGas you also get labour continuity eg their own engineers or if plumbing; Dyno Plumbing staff vs other providers sub contract out to third parties for boiler/central heating problems, Gas Safety checks or plumbing & electrical issues. This has proven invaluable especially if there is a problem with any works carried out as you have the fall back of their supervisor, which on 3 different occasions has meant substantial compensation eg leak in pipes under bathroom required floor or ceiling in lounge below to be opened up for access which they wouldn't do without the Landlord's signed declaration as consequential decor damage is not covered. They delayed a few days longer than they should have in getting this form to me to sign by which time the ceiling collapsed causing lots of damage in the lounge which they fully paid for to be made good. Another example was water pressure issues which they traced & resolved & retarmacadamed the driveway & meant I didn't need to claim on my buildings insurance. Additionally if a boiler was installed by another, as long as it's a boiler they cover (check with them before installing as they have a list of boilers that have problems), if can't be fixed within 7 years of new, they will replace & if installed by them they replace within 10 years of new. I've had this happen twice.
The cost of their GSC is cheaper than an independent plumber. They also carry out annual boiler checks to avoid future call-out problems.
To self insure I find is a false economy as it only saves you money if few call -out problems and low costing jobs. You only need one big job & you've wiped out your premium savings.
Just my opinion but would strongly recommend every Landlord have this unless they are large portfolio landlords who employ their own staff.

Eudora Burn

15:33 PM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

Thanks all - great input. Self insuring would not be feasible and the excess would be border line. I would only need 1 call out for each property and likely I would spend the cost of the premiums. I have looked at Homeserve and the price is virtually the same as Bgas. Note both Bgas and Homeserve include the annual gas safety cert. The big upside with BG is that they have own staff and there is continuity. Plus they give priority to certain categories of call out e.g. families with young children and the elderly, all of which have a 2 hour response time. I have tried it and it def works. I don't bother with the plumbing and electrics options.

With their prices increasing 10% on one property with no call out during the last 12 months and a 2 year old boiler, I would like a cheaper option but the same service. Yesterday, spent 1.5 hours on the phone with Bgas (I was exhausted) and managed to push down the cost of all of my policies. Crazy the 10% increase disappeared and they have now quoted lower than last year, it appears they rely on auto renewal/apathy to push through increases.

I wonder if Property118 would be interested in negotiating a bulk deal for landlords/forum members with Bgas?

Ray Davison

15:56 PM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

You guys must be very unlucky to have that sort of expense on boiler repairs. As it happens, I've just an hour ago had an involce from my plumber for a call out to repair a boiler - 2 fast blow fuses on the circuit board. Total cost £47. That's ;less than the excess quoted above and that is the first expense on that boiler (Other than CP12's which cost me £40/yr) since 2008! Going by the costs quoted above, I've saved myself nearly £3000 in that time.

Eudora Burn

16:18 PM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

Reply to the comment left by "Ray Davison" at "04/07/2017 - 15:56":

I wish I could have those plumbing costs ;-). It really depends on the tenant and area. I have 2 properties in North London and 2 in Reading - plumbing rates especially for rented properties are high. Good plumbers are busy and I am not sure in London that any independent plumber could commit to a 2 hour response time for the elderly and families with young children = this represents 3 of my properties.

Ray Davison

17:57 PM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

I guess it does depend where you are. Having said that, my experience of BG is diabolical. No evening or weekend appointments unless it's an emergency and won't liaise direct with my Tenants as my local plumbers do. They may have changed, Do they really attend within 2 hours?

Jay James

23:03 PM, 4th July 2017
About A year ago

I suggest anyone interested in this topic seeks out and actually reads every related Which? magazine article. That's a couple hours. Approached with an open mind, the reading would likely leave each of us of similar opinion about the merits of service contracts and Centrica (the British Gas owners).

Yvonne Halliday

19:12 PM, 9th July 2017
About A year ago

I insure buildings through Simply Business, 118 may also offer Landlord emergency cover £65 per property per year for emergency call out up to £500 all the services. i was only declined once when not deemed an emergency as the tenant had an alternative. Its saved me a fortune it doesn't do the annual gas check but still cheaper than the British Gas policy which I used previously


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