Exchanged Contracts - Boiler Broken - Freaking Out

(16 Posts)
ACubed Mon 24-Oct-16 12:29:26

Please can someone help me - we've just exchanged contracts and complete in less than a month. Our boiler has packed in, the plumber said it's too old to fix and we need a replacement, BUT the pipes need replacing so will either have to rip up all the floors or have ugly external pipes.
I just don't know what to do - obviously I'm not going to leave our buyers without hot water, or anything dodgy - but do I ask them what they want? Having written it all out it seems like that's the only option, but what if they now pull out? I am fr-eaking out - any advice on how to handle it would be really appreciated.

daisygirlmac Mon 24-Oct-16 12:32:10

I would get your solicitor to contact your buyers and explain the situation and I would offer to reduce the price to meet them some or all of the way towards the cost of a new boiler. That way they can get what they want and put pipes where they want them and you don't have to faff with it

ACubed Mon 24-Oct-16 12:33:09

That sounds very sensible, thanks for getting back so fast

LIZS Mon 24-Oct-16 12:33:10

They can't now pull out without a significant legal and financial issue. Is it really non-reparable ?

blueskyinmarch Mon 24-Oct-16 12:33:32

Cant the plumber just patch it up and make it do until you have moved out? I assume any survey the buyers did flagged up the old boiler/pipes issue?

ACubed Mon 24-Oct-16 12:35:31

They didn't do a survey for some mad reason! But they are from a different country and have a child so I don't want to leave them in the lurch

YelloDraw Mon 24-Oct-16 12:41:13

You have exchanged - so this is basically not your problem. The price is now agreed and they can not pull out.

Bad timing, and unfortunate for the buyers but this comes under 'shit happens'.

Get a 2nd opinion and see if a plumber can at least get it going temporarily or at least of hot water if not heating.

johnd2 Mon 24-Oct-16 12:50:57

First ask your solicitor what the legal situation is, as it's complicated between exchange and completion re risk and repairs. They should also be able to advise you on what to do regarding the negotiations. Personally I'd rather be left with broken heating than a lash up job of pipework everywhere.

Also worth noting that it's not worth boiler engineers fixing boilers older than a certain age, because they end up called back for other issues. The low risk option is always to quote for a new unit.
Your boiler is almost certainly repairable if you know someone qualified who will do it (safely) as a favour pay for time and parts for time only without guarantee of other parts.
They just worry they'll end up spending hours at their own cost and still have a broken boiler. Especially at this time of year they won't be happy to do that.

ACubed Mon 24-Oct-16 12:57:02

Thanks for all the advice everyone, I'll talk to my solicitor and speak to some more plumbers

purpleladybird Mon 24-Oct-16 15:51:17

The house needs to be the same condition at exchange as at completion. It sounds like your buyers wouldn't know whether it was working or not - but that's the legal position. I agree with asking your solicitor for advice but note once you inform them you'll need to fix it.

Patching it up is probably your best bet.

I realise this sound silly but have you definitely exchanged contracts? A month delay is quite unusual so worth checking you've exchanged and not just signed the paperwork.

Whatdoiknow31 Mon 24-Oct-16 23:01:03

What a load of old tosh!!

The reason boilers are deemed not repairable is because the manufacturer has stopped making the parts or it is beyond economical repair to spend money on a 15yr + boiler. Tell me, would you appreciate your heating engineer recommending a repair that costs £250 - £500 for a few weeks later the main heat exchanger to go and it to cost another £400? Because his/her time is chargeable for the second repair as the boiler has worked between times. Do you want to spend £900 on a boiler which may only last a few more months? Or £2k on a new boiler with a long Guarantee?

Everyone should be given the facts pertaining to their individual boiler - not assuming that every heating engineer wants the 'easy option' and in fact in some cases are actually thinking of their customers long term pocket rather than using them for a short term cash cow trying to repair a boiler which has seen better days!!!

Maraschinocherry Tue 25-Oct-16 09:25:06

talking to your solicitor is the best advice.

Even a full structural survey doesn't check the condition of a boiler. The surveyor would just advise to get system check by a qualified engineer.

You have exchanged - so this is basically not your problem. Not strictly true, as everything must be in the same condition than on the day of exchange. In theory, no, the buyer cannot pull out, but they can claim back the cost of repair of things that have been damaged between exchange and completion. Your solicitor will know exactly what the contracts actually state and describe.

A month between exchange and completion is a really long time, but it doesn't change anything.

QuiteLikely5 Tue 25-Oct-16 09:29:57

You need to check this. Some contracts have clauses about heating and your liability if it fails within a given timescale.

I agree it's a nightmare but best to sort it with your solicitor incase it comes back to bite you in the butt

FinallyHere Tue 25-Oct-16 09:38:47

Find a different plumber. Old boilers are much easier to service and keep going than the modern stuff, which essentially cannot be maintained. An old boiler can almost always be repaired, since the parts are mechanical. You do need to find someone who knows about them and importantly knows where to source the parts. All the best with finding someone, where are you roughly?

ACubed Wed 26-Oct-16 06:40:00

So thanks to all your advice I've found a new plumber who is fixing it on Friday, thanks so much everyone! X

FinallyHere Wed 26-Oct-16 13:15:09

Brilliant, glad to hear the update too, thank you.

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