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Rented Home Heating Wars - WIBU?

(38 Posts)
ArseHair Wed 26-Oct-16 14:07:34

Not sure whether I have grounds to complain or if I should just accept this situation...

We live in a privately rented house. Three months ago, the boiler started making loud noises. The only way to describe the noise is it sounds like Armageddon's kicking off in our kitchen. Not constantly, we switched it off to stop it. When we turned it back on, it would 'spark' so badly, our broadband would disconnect!

So, we reported it straight away. Two people came to look, said there was nothing wrong with it. We reported it during our inspection, too, and at least once a week since then. Owner said that as long as the boiler's functional, she wouldn't pay to have it looked at. thlshock. This is against the advice of the plumber, who said it needs a new circuit board.

Last Friday, it went bang. Won't switch on or anything - no heating, no hot water. Immersion heater not working either. Same plumber said new part will be here Tuesday at the latest.

Tuesday came and went, back on the phone to them - the landlord didn't give their permission for it to be ordered until last night. So we will be stuck till Friday, if not Monday 31st.

I'm pregnant (landlady knows this), desperate for a soak in the bath and have a six year old full of cold.

I'm so angry about this - am I overreacting or would this piss you off too? Have I got grounds to complain? And if so, who do I complain to?

They've sent me a shitty little electric heater and told me to boil a kettle for hot water (!).

stella23 Wed 26-Oct-16 14:11:13

No they are fuckers, but can and will get away with it, you can complain but no one gives a shot about private renters and the shitty housing situation.

MimiSunshine Wed 26-Oct-16 14:16:32

Your landlord has to ensure you have basic utilities, hearing and hot water are included. This link has good info on. I would GD emailing them ASAP to say they have an obligation to fix it and more than a reasonable amount of time has gone by.

ArseHair Wed 26-Oct-16 14:56:37

I agree, stella123 - fuckers of the highest order!

Thanks for that info, MimiSunshine - much appreciated!

JellyBelli Wed 26-Oct-16 14:58:16

You can report them to the Environmental Health if the house is not fit for habitation, and they will be fined.

dingdongdigeridoo Wed 26-Oct-16 15:02:54

LL sounds like a nightmare. Yes, you should be angry. A broken boiler is dangerous.

Shelter have lots of good advice. They've helped me with a dodgy LL in the past.

stella23 Wed 26-Oct-16 15:04:56

Honestly don't waste your time reporting, they are obliged to give you heat and water, they are doing this! Shelter might be able to help, but basically you're on your own. Disgusting really.

Littleallovertheshop Wed 26-Oct-16 15:46:04

Stella - the op has no hot water or heat.

ComfortingKormaBalls Wed 26-Oct-16 15:53:22

Maybe you could reduce your rent for that month??????

Sparklesilverglitter Wed 26-Oct-16 15:56:30

Who were the 2 people that looked at it and said There was nothing wrong? Did it pass its inspection?

Anyway not it's actually broken it does seem like a long weight.

I rent out the property I had before me and dh got together and for boiler repairs we generally get them done within 2-3 days but it does depend on any parts that are needed and when we've had problem with boilers in the past (lucky only once) we did supply 2 oil radiators and an electric heater

ShoeEatingMonster Wed 26-Oct-16 15:58:37

You should never withhold or reduce rent without discussing with the landlord first. It gets people into a lot of trouble!

Op do you have a letting agent or do you rent direct from the landlord?

Pinkheart5915 Wed 26-Oct-16 16:01:01

So it's already been 5 days and your looking at another 5 possibly 6 days. It is a long time I think.

Me and dh rent out a few properties and things like boiler repairs are done within a few days ( it obviously differs depending what the problem is) and tenants are supplied with electric radiators or heaters until the boiler is up and running.

Have you had a gas safety certificate? Did your boiler pass?

SpookyPumpkin Wed 26-Oct-16 16:05:21

It is a very long weight.

Our tenants for things like this your looking at a couple of days maximum really.

Don't take the above advice about withholding rent, it's never a good idea should never be recommend.

If you rent from an estate agent? Get on the phone and explain you've got a little one and need the heating because of that and it's simply not good enough to wait until the 31st

chickychickyparmparm Wed 26-Oct-16 16:18:09

That's terrible! I have had this happen in the past and we did get a rent reduction (landlord agreed). But I didn't have DCs at the time, and wasn't pregnant.

Poor you, hope it's sorted quickly.

ArseHair Wed 26-Oct-16 16:21:41

Thanks for the replies.

ShoeEatingMonster - we have a letting agent, but all they do is say that they have to get permission from the Landlord / authorisation that she will pay up. Makes me wonder wtf we pay them £700 p/m for, really. Well, I know it's to rent a house, but I'm in rant mode grin

SpookyPumpkin - I've been on the phone, forceful and polite, a number of times to reiterate that, they don't appear to give a shit. I shall keep on until they can stand it no longer. Thanks for the advice smile

Pinkheart5915 - yes, it passed back in March 2016.

Sparklesilverglitter - it was their in-house maintenance guy and a property inspector.

I won't withhold rent, thanks for thinking of ideas though!

Dread to think how much the electric bill will go up this month, with that heater. I swear it's from the Ark...

Will read up some more tonight from the places you've kindly told me about.

Cheers wine (or just a brew for me)

ArseHair Wed 26-Oct-16 16:24:59

BTW, I've just moved offices in the past 20minuts as the one I was in isn't suited to my expanding bump, and guess what.....


No. Frigging. Heating!!!

Someone's got it in for me, for sure.

OhtoblazeswithElvira Wed 26-Oct-16 16:26:01

People die because of faulty boilers. I would remind the estate agents about this. Threaten with going to Environmental healh and the local press - they don't want the negative publicity, do they? When my landlord was taking the mickey it was the estate agents that gave him the kick up the arse he needed to get the house sorted.

dahlia83 Wed 26-Oct-16 16:26:51

Call your local council environmental health housing section.

AppleMagic Wed 26-Oct-16 16:31:59

People die because of faulty boilers.

This. Any suggestion of issues with the boiler and I'd have someone (Gas Safe registered) round to our tenants same day after telling them to switch it all off.

YelloDraw Wed 26-Oct-16 16:46:44

Call the agent and insist they provide you with more electric radiators to use for the next week - at least 3 (living space and one for your bedroom and one for DD's bedroom).

Ask for the agent to explain why a delay of 5 days for authorization for a part order is considered to be acceptable and how this complies whit their repairs and maintenance policy.

previously1474907171 Wed 26-Oct-16 16:53:05

When was your last gas safety check? Is it up to date? Do you have the certificate? If there hasn't been one they could be in trouble.

RebelandaStunner Wed 26-Oct-16 17:04:32

You should have been given a copy of the gas safety certificate.
Boilers still break though, we have boiler cover for our properties, it's fairly cheap aprox £12 p/m per boiler for peace of mind all round. If the boiler break our tenants have all the information so can arrange call out asap to fit in around their commitments. It's been used every year on at least one property and none of the boilers are old just shit

MatildaTheCat Wed 26-Oct-16 17:07:14

When my boiler broke down in my rental property it took ten days to finally get it replaced as it had become unreliable. I was mortified and gave the tenants £100 back from their rent as a token.

I suggest you ask for a partial refund of your rent but your LL sounds mean. I would also suggest she takes out an insurance policy so next time it breaks it is fixed in a shorter time and properly checked and serviced.

cricketballs Wed 26-Oct-16 17:10:37

Absolutely not right. Our boiler broke xmas morning; LL had it replaced boxing day (which we never demanded/expected)

CraftyGal Wed 26-Oct-16 17:16:35

Even if the appliance passed the Gas Safety check it could now be unsafe. It's like an M.O.T., fine at the time of checking but it could still go wrong.

As a landlord myself I am disgusted when I hear bad experiences like this. I am fortunate enough not to use a letting agent. Having rented myself for a long time I know what it's like to get passed from pillar to post.

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