Heat Genius, Good Investment?

by Readers Question

9:09 AM, 21st April 2015
About 4 years ago

Heat Genius, Good Investment?

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Heat Genius, Good Investment?

I have been a landlord for approximately 3 years. 

I have a question about a possible investment, it’s a remote controlled heating system which enables the user to heat up specific locations in the household, as opposed to the whole household simultaneously. It’s supposed to save the user money in the long term (& apparently really convenient) and it was recommended to me by a dear friend (he said he bought it off a company called ‘Heat Genius).

I want your opinions on it, what do you think about this investment?

Has anyone had any experience with ‘Heat Genius’ or any other companies which do the same thing?

Thanks

John Leducheat

 



Comments

Mark Alexander

9:13 AM, 21st April 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi John

Unless you pay the heating bills I can't see how you will make a return on your investment.

If you are paying the bills then your tenants are likely to be more carefree about them anyway so will they use this or will they just heat the whole house?

I'm not into HMO's but I do know that HMO landlords often pay bills and use several systems they can control/lock etc. but I've not heard the name "Heat Genius" come up in conversations I'm afraid so I can't say whether it's a good system or whether there are better options.
.

ian

10:45 AM, 21st April 2015
About 4 years ago

Just install thermostatic radiator valves on each radiator in the house turn them to low in the rooms your not using & higher in the one's you are using, Only £10 - £15 each cheap & simple.

matchmade

11:40 AM, 21st April 2015
About 4 years ago

You don't say why you think this system might be a good idea. Are your properties HMOs? What do you hope to gain from such a system?

I've never heard of Heat Genius either, but having looked at their website, I'm sceptical. Do your tenants want you to be able to control the heat levels in their home in the first place? I'd also be concerned at the cost, the likelihood of it breaking down, and whether it is really appropriate for a rental property. A combi boiler and TRVs is much simpler, is tried and tested, and is perfectly adequate as far as most tenants are concerned. I think they'd rather you spent your money on insulation and sealing draughts, or offered them a lower rent.

I'm not even sure Heat Genius is much use in an ordinary domestic house. Their example of how you can change the heating in individual rooms is all very well, but people have a habit of changing their behaviour: they use bedrooms in the evenings, not just the lounge; they have a habit of leaving the doors open, which defeats the aim of heating rooms separately; and if you are working alone in a study during the day and don't want to heat the whole house, then all you need is a quiet oil radiator, not some whizz-bang smartphone-operated system that you have to keep fiddling with.

M H

17:39 PM, 21st April 2015
About 4 years ago

Honeywell evohome is another option...

Four of us in our house and no one has such a routine to make it worth while, pretty much all in and all out around the same times..
I guess if it is a house share and one works from home it would cut the costs then.
However, how much would a breakage cost..?
pros and cons as always..

Mark Hula

18:12 PM, 21st April 2015
About 4 years ago

I have the heat genius system in a hmo ; works really well !

Mick Roberts

8:05 AM, 22nd April 2015
About 4 years ago

I’m gonna’ subscribe to this thread, as I’m building meself a house & having one of these heating systems where u can turn individual rooms off etc. And be nice to know who know’s what. ‘Cause my builder also first time doing an individual room on/off app thingymijig.

My reason is, only need the two offices on in the day, rest of the house not, & then at weekends, don’t want to be heating the two offices up when no one in ‘em.

I too have oil filled timer radiator in my office for 20 years ha ha, but time to now treat meself.

Jon Landlord

16:36 PM, 22nd April 2015
About 4 years ago

I have Heat Genius in my own home, and am on their beta tester list.

I think it is a great system, especially if you have high heating bills, or you have a house where some rooms tend to be much warmer or cooler than others, or if the house is occupied a lot during the day - or any combination of the above.

I've found that it's taken quite a bit of tweaking to get the system to do what we need it to do. So for example, the bedrooms are all on fixed schedules, as we tend to know in advance what time we're likely to go to bed and get up.

Meanwhile, the downstairs rooms use Footprint mode, which uses previous activity to predict when the room needs to be heated, but will also heat up if it detects that people are in the room, and turns off if no-one's been in there for a while.

So to get back to original question: if you're not responsible for the bills, I probably wouldn't recommend it for a let property as (a) it's expensive, and you'd be unlikely to see a return on your investment; (b) to get the most out of it requires spending a little time, now and again, to tweak the settings; and (c) while it mostly works well, there are still a few rough edges at the moment, so if the tenants can't get it to work, they might expect you to sort it out.

If you are responsible for the bills, it could save you money in the long term...if the tenants use it sensibly. I'd be concerned about using it in an HMO if the whole property uses a single boiler, as there's nothing to stop one tenant turning the heating off in all the other flats!

All BankersAreBarstewards Smith

9:45 AM, 25th April 2015
About 4 years ago

if the "controlling device" is mobile and can be carried round the house... it will go missing really quickly. these things are not cheap to replace either.

Jon Landlord

18:45 PM, 25th April 2015
About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "All BankersAreBarstewards Smith" at "25/04/2015 - 09:45":

The "controlling device" is the user's phone (via the HG app for Android or iPhone) or their computer.

This was one reason I opted for HG rather than Honeywell's Evohome, which has a dedicated control unit. Also means you can control the system when you're away from home, which can be useful sometimes.

All BankersAreBarstewards Smith

18:47 PM, 25th April 2015
About 4 years ago

I like that.... I have just had to pay £100+ for another Honeywell controller which a tenant broke......

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