Gas Boiler Regulations – Landlords Question

Gas Boiler Regulations – Landlords Question

23:17 PM, 7th March 2013, About 9 years ago 69

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Gas Boiler Regulations - Landlords QuestionI recently asked a plumber to look at a gas boiler in my rented flat. The hot water was patchy so asked him to rectify the problem, do a service and while he has at it give me the annual boiler safety check.

However, he took one look and refused to do anything, recommending that we shut off the boiler as it contravened the new gas boiler regulations implemented in December 2012.

Naturally my tenant was unhappy with that.

Apparently, these regulations state that the flues of the boiler must be visible for checking. Therefore, if as is the case of many flats, it is all behind panels/cupbords etc, you have to cut access holes every meter until it reaches the outside wall. Until we undertook this work he could not complete the work and left sending us the invoice.

Result a call out fee + VAT amounting to £100.

I wanted to raise awareness of these new gas boiler regulations to other landlords and also get your opinion as to whether I should pay this guy as I have now had to get another plumber to do the work.

Thanks for your advice.

Amanda Yates



Comments

Joe Bloggs

17:45 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

INDUSTRY OBSERVER - i think you may be missing my point. £50 may be ok for one, but when there economies of scale, the unit price should come down. £100 ph for a gas engineer is extortionate IMO and i am in london. this is easy money for engineers and i think more people should haggle down the prices rather than just accept.

Industry Observer

17:49 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

If they are a few minutes apart, or even in the same block, your argument has some merit, but not an awful lot more!! There is a basic charge for everything, you may save a little on travelk time etc I grant you.

But what if it is a set figure and then the gas man finds for whatever reason that one takes him twice as long as it should through no fault of his own? Are yu then prepared to let him increase his fee?

I have been in this business 20+ years and am aware of a lot of costs all round the country and have never, ever heard of a gas safety record costing less than £40 + VAT and that is just for the boiler and no other appliances.

Just had my own don here 2 months ago, boiler (brand new 12 months ago) and gas fire and that was £70 I think incl the VAT - South coast of England.

Joe Bloggs

18:45 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

i paid £25 each 2 weeks ago so put that in your pipe! and before you say he wasnt qualified, i checked on the gas safe site. as i said...9 times out of 10 money for old rope. i always accompany the engineer so i know what they do and how long it takes...i bet few landlords do that?

19:05 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

This thread seems to be turning rather aggressive. Surely we are here to help each other and offer advice. Viewpoints , yes but to win an argument? Personally I see value in paying a skilled tradesman for his time as I expect to be paid for mine. I don't expect to be ripped off but I don't want to screw them down either. When I need them I trust they will respond quickly to the person who pays them decent money. And I always pay them within 7 days as well. Who will they choose to put themselves out for? With fuel prices the way they are and vehicle costs around 50p per mile if you account for everything, I frankly would not start the engine for a £20 job and if you expect your contractors to you will quickly find them avoiding your calls.

19:13 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

Industry Observer
I agree with your contentions.
I suppose i was only suggesting that a gas engineer could have asked about this particular flue problem as it has been so widely trailed; though not being picked up by some LL.
It is of course clearly EVERY LL responsibility to ensure they are aware of ALL regulations etc that pertain to their responsibilities as LL.; this this issue has been alluded to by MA; effectively the inadequacy of LL availing themselves of relevant information.
Accreditation as a methodology to ensure that ALL LL are at least advised of all relevant information commensurate with their statutory responsibilities is something that I could not in all seriousness object to.
Clearly the obvious accreditation bodies that instantly lend themselves to such qualification as relevant information providers, are of course the major LL organisations such as the NLA and RLA.
As a small LL I would not object to being forced to become a member of such an organisation to effectively discharge my accreditation by being a member of one of these officially recognised accreditation bodies.
Whether a LL chooses to read the information sent to a LL is not the point.
They should read it and if they don't then they have only themselves to blame if they are unaware of issues.
Quite frankly as it seems LA will be shortly compulsorily regulated it is not unreasonable for govt to expect ALL LL to at least belong to organisations that have a recognised track record in provisioning info relevant to ALL LL.
Property118 may be considered to be one of those organisations!!

There is clearly a large amount of LL ignorance out there; this does not mean that LL are ignorant so and so's, it just means they need to be educated.
To leave the situation as it is with education of LL seemingly being a hit or miss affair is not really fair on tenants.
As LL we surely have a responsibility to our tenants to ensure we are fully on our game regarding LL responsibilities.
I believe the vast majority of LL would have no issue with being forced to become members of LL organisations like the NL!/RLA.
A big problem though is that some property investors refuse to accept they are LL and think that the LA is responsible for everything!
They are clearly naive here.
How to ensure they become less naive is the issue.
My above suggestions whilst not being a total panacea for the problems of knowledge across the LL industry is at least a start.
So I welcome being forced to become a member of a LL body.
I think a member no should be something that like the EPC is indicated on any advert before a property is marketed.
.

Joe Bloggs

19:20 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

ray - ive not screwed the price down, that was what was agreed, he had a choice and i paid him on completion and got an invoice. everyone happy. my point is that the next best price was £150 for 3 compared to £75, which equates to £150 ph which is a rip off. are you a gas engineer?

20:13 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

No Joe, I'm not a Gas Engineer! I am primarily a LL with (Along with my business partner) a modest portfolio (10 properties). We keep up to date with legislation and good practice and strive to be good landlords who supply quality properties. I'm not saying we are perfect or know everything but do want to learn whenever I can (That's why I'm here). We also manage a few properties for other LL who approach us via recommendation. We only deal with with LL who want to do a good job and prepare their properties appropriately. We also carry out most of our own maintenance and decoration and offer these services to our LL as well. As always there will be faults on both sides of any argument however we see it from both sides and you would not believe some of the things we see! How about the Landlord that thought a single picture light on the wall in a 20ft long living room was sufficient for a young couple with a new baby because he and his wife had lived like that for 10 years! We don't work with him anymore! Or the landlord that objected to us responding to a tenant with a water leak at 5am in the morning - because we charged him £25 to sort the problem without consulting him first! I wonder if he would have answered his phone at 5am and how much damage the water would have caused before we managed to contact him? Its often a case of perspective and a balance view is important.

Lisé Willcox

21:08 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

Blymee ! Very informative I love these emails more must take both Gas engineers out for drinkys as they are good fun and I need to talk flaps or not in my flats but I think as outside walls I'm ok but a round of drinks with the chaps keeps them sweet too!

All my tradespeople are paid on the nail and I negotiate if I want to understand the cost, usually I am left red as I had no idea what was involved! Especially the cost of keeping up with their gas qualifications! The chaps are very helpful and we are slowly upgrading every boiler to reduce repair bills long term.

But I did enjoy this discussion and I believe all LL/investors should be licensed to practice or opt out by using management company. I detest LL who provide accommodation less safe than that they would for their own families. We are professionals are we not? I think the inland revinue could play a part too by sending info out if a return involves property... Just an idea x

Lisé Willcox

21:10 PM, 9th March 2013, About 9 years ago

Apologies for typo!

Industry Observer

9:49 AM, 10th March 2013, About 9 years ago

@Joe Bloggs

Unless qualified engineer yourself how can you possibly know "what they do"? £25 is a real result - I wonder whether the resulting safety record is a real CP12. Pay peanuts in any walk of life and you get monkeys - a gas safety record for £25 is just incredible, so well done you.

@Ray couldn't agree more and in your sentiment about not just payment level but promptness of payment. The delay larger compnaies make smaller contractors endure in this country is a scandal. Well done you for prompt payment. My approach as well, usually to a shocked expression on face of contractor.

Final post from me on this story

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