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Private Rent - Broken Boiler

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425 views 1 replies latest reply: 09 January 2017
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Tenant

Hi,

Our boiler broke down on Tuesday 3rd January 2017. I reported it to the estate agent and then a gas repair man came out on Wednesday 4th January 2017.

The part that he thought needed replacing wasn’t in stock so he went away and then came back on the evening of Thursday 5th January to replace the part. This didn’t sort out the problem so he said he would have to come back Friday to speak to the manufacturer. When he came back, he spoke to the manufacturer and said they had told him that he has done every check possible and that it might be the circuit board that needs replacing but no guarantee that this will fix the problem or the other option was to replace the boiler entirely (It is an old boiler).

The gas man reported this to the landlady on Friday 6th January and from what I’ve been told from the estate agent, the landlady want’s to get an engineer from the actual manufacturer to look at the problem (even tho the previous gas engineer spoke to the company directly to get their advice).

I’ve not had any update since and have been told by the estate agent to not go directly to the landlady for an update so today I’ve emailed the estate agent to ask for an update but I’m yet to hear back from them either.

In the meantime we’re not able to live at the property due to it being so cold and we also have an 8 week old baby so I’m at a loss as to what I can do to get this moving more quickly because it feel’s that we’re back to square one with another engineer coming to look at the problem – I’ve no idea when this will be so I have no idea when we’re going to be able to move back in the property. I’ve asked for a rent reduction but this is at the discreton of the landlady (again I’ve had no feedback on this either) so I am really just looking for some guidance as to what my right’s are and what I can do to get a resolution to this issue faster.

Thanks.

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Tenant

Hello, 

This is very unfortunate, but you have to consider that the landlady is working towards fixing the problem. If this gas engineer can’t guarantee that the work will fix the problem, the landlady will still have to replace the boiler and pay for this engineer’s work, both of which are expensive. 

Of course, it is no doubt that the landlord should carry out the work, and, pay all the costs associated with this repair, so this is what I suggest you do: 

First of all, a letting agent should not forbid you to contact the landlady. Your contract is with her and the letting agent is merely acting on her behalf. The burden is with the landlord, always. You have a right to know who your landlord is and can freely contact her at the address provided, by post, or if you have any other contact that she agreed to use for communication. 

If the agent is unresponsive you should ask your landlady for an update. 

Second, you can remind both the estate agent and the landlady that you are without hot water for a week (as of tomorrow). You’ve been patient and have given them reasonable time to take care of the problem. Any further delay will make you more likely to contact the council and report the problem with them.  

The local council’s Environmental Health department makes sure living conditions are maintained in all rented properties, yours included. The council can do an inspection of the property and order your landlady to repair the boiler ASAP. 

Your landlady should realise that going to the council is bad for her and take the charge in resolving the problem. 

If the second gas engineer does fix the boiler in their visit. You should negotiate with the landlady to purchase temporary equipment, or a new gas boiler, which are to be deducted from your rent payments. 

You really have to work together to solve the problem as fast as possible. 

Please, download our guide on Solving heating and hot water problems in rented properties – http://www.thetenantsvoice.co.uk/letter-templates/request-repairs-heating-and-hot-water

There you will find all the information you need and template letters to make official notices and requests. 

Hope this helps.

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