Utility supplies for a flat conversions

Utility supplies for a flat conversions

by Readers Question

Guest Author

10:58 AM, 7th April 2013, About 11 years ago 7

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Utility supplies for a flat conversionsI think everyone who has had to organise new utility supplies for a flat conversion will agree that getting new gas, electric and water supplies to a property is not a trivial task, especially when you need 8 for a flat conversion project.

For those of you who have achieved this I would be interested in knowing how hard or easy you found this and whether anyone out there has managed getting it arranged with a minimum cost and timescale.

A step by step guide or recommendation of the best companies to approach would be a great help.

Thanks for your help.

Parm Lal

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Alex Williams

14:38 PM, 7th April 2013, About 11 years ago

In terms of utilities basically the cost is the cost. You can save by digging your own trench or whatever but broadly speaking that is as far as you can go.

If you can be bothered you can save by getting a large three phase supply and large gas meter and putting tenants on sub-meters but then you have to get the money off them each month. It also makes it harder to split the project up by selling the flats.

21:03 PM, 7th April 2013, About 11 years ago

It was a nightmare. I needed three gas and electricity supplies for three flats, and a new water supply for one house. Oddly enough the gas, which I thought would be the worst, was easy and reasonably priced. The electricity was incredibly expensive and getting them to agree to put the meters all in one location was never resolved. In the end I abandoned the development and I'm working on a plan B. Then there was the new supply for the house. Severn Trent expect you to do a lot of the work, but are very picky about the way it's done and don't tell you all of their requirements. In all the inspector visited five times before approving the connection. The only good thing was that there was no extra charge for each visit!

Alex Williams

22:22 PM, 7th April 2013, About 11 years ago

I know someone who has done these things re the water ....

a) connect all the flats to one tap so long as it is not metered. Once the water board find out they will blow a gasket and come out and put meters in at their expense.

b) get ready to go, phone the water board and say there is a leak. When the boys turn up to sort it offer them £20 to connect you up. (£20 was a lot of money in 1993 when he last did this).

8:23 AM, 8th April 2013, About 11 years ago

Utilities are the most painful part of any development. Its such a painfully slow process. About 5yrs ago we needed 3 new 3 phase electricity supplies for a commercial development. We budgeted on £5k. After many visits and calls the quote came back saying there was no spare capacity at the sub station, so we needed to contribute to a new sub station, wait 9months and pay £100k.
We waited well in excess of 9months and eventually with the help of a consultant got the cost down to £15k.
Whenever you deal with a monopoly you know its going to hurt, to mitigate slightly I always make sure I am on site when the surveyor comes out, ask him where the costs lie and offer to do as much as you possibly can yourself, definately dig your own trench as someone else has said, and make their canble ruin as short as possoible......then prey.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

8:45 AM, 8th April 2013, About 11 years ago

Hi Phil, welcome to Property118, it's great to have such an experienced developer such as yourself helping to answer this question.

0:20 AM, 10th April 2013, About 11 years ago

In 2005 I started converting the basement in 130 year old Victorian house.
I am the owner of the ground floor and the basement here. There are two other owner occupied apartments on the two floors above.
I found that all new services for the whole house had to be part of my plans. Getting everyone to agree to sharing the cost,of what was to them unnecessary, was a long and stressful business. ( A grudge has been held against me since).
The cost came to over £18 K and the work took 16 months, in stages. The overall costs of the conversion sky rocketed. and I have not been able to sell to recover these costs. I have become a reluctant landlord.

Gunga Din

20:45 PM, 10th April 2013, About 11 years ago

I needed two additional gas supplies into a three-flat house which only had one. I was advised by a friendly consultant that applying for two supplies at the same property flags you up as a developer, and I should make two separate applications. It didn't matter that they were for the same address/date/time! I can't remember the costs but the saving was spectacular.


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