We live in rented accommodation which is serviced by a letting agency on behalf of the Landlord. We don’t know who the actually Landlord is but have lived in the property for 7 years and have never missed a payment or caused any trouble to the agency.
The boiler has been on its last legs for the last 12 months, twice already this year the engineer has repaired the boiler. The problem is the heating and hot water only works intermittently. To be fair after the last repair the boiler has worked fine for a few months but last Monday it stopped working completely (we have tried the usual, bleeding the radiators, reset the system etc). The boiler is a combi so we should always have hot water. We reported the issue to the agency on Monday via email advising them of the problem and that we have a new born baby at home as well as an 11 year old. They replied on Tuesday advising “they have passed this onto the plumber” we had no word from the plumber by Thursday so sent them another email again stressing that we have a new baby and 11 year old at home who we can’t wash or keep warm. They replied with a very rude response stating they have already advised us this had been passed to the plumber.
The plumber phoned us on Friday and advised he has told the agency the boiler can’t be repaired and has needed replacing for 3 years, he couldn’t do anything without the authority of the agency, he asked us not to repeat the conversation to the agency as he would get into trouble. The boiler kicked in on Saturday evening and is working at the moment, but it is only a matter of time before it stops working again.
It is now Monday (7 days later) and we still haven’t heard from the agency or plumber when they will likely carry out the repairs.
I was just wondering what my rights are and the next step I can take. What is a reasonable amount of time to repair or replace the boiler? I would have thought with the weather and having a baby at home it would be seen as a priority? I read we can report the agency to the council but I don’t want to risk being evicted so close to Christmas. The agency have also informed us they will be increasing our rent in the new year (before we reported the boiler)
Am I within my rights to source my own plumber and have him carry out the repairs?
If the agency plumber is correct and the boiler can’t be repair, can I order a new boiler and charge the agency?
The agency are generally slow to carry out repairs, and are rude and unapproachable, but we like the house as it is ideally location for work and schools and is cheaper than other houses in the area.
Any advice would be much appreciated, at the moment we are ok as it is working but I worried about it dropping again leaving us with no heating or hot water between Christmas and new year.