Consumer law question - service contract

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    Consumer law question - service contract

    One of my properties has a service contract on a burglar alarm. The deal is that I pay an amount, and I get an annual service, and any problems noted during the service are repaired for the price of the parts only (I also get discounted call-outs but that is unrelated to my query).

    So they did a service, noted that one sensor was not working, and replaced the sensor. They then sent a bill for £45 for the sensor (labour Free of charge).

    The problem is that I can buy the identical new sensor on Amazon at £9.50. So its a 5 fold markup on the "part". Fitting it took about 3 minutes and I could have done it myself.

    I'm inclined to pay £9.50 and invite them to sue me for the rest (and cancel the contract). However I thought I would check if anyone else has any other perspective on the meaning of "parts" - i.e. THEIR parts price list. The contract is otherwise non-illuminating.

    #2
    What does you contract with them say about this?

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      #3
      Ha. Reminds me of a certain gas service company who invariably tell you they can't repair your boiler as it is 'beyond economical repair'. (It's more economical for them to sell you a new one.)

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        #4
        That almost resembles with the car breakdown policy offered by RAC / AA who most often in winter times when come to rescue you by charging your battery then always offer their own brand of battery with free labour which normally 5 times expensive than the one you can privately buy yourself from elsewhere. But they won't assist you if you won't buy any part from them

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          #5
          Originally posted by DPT57 View Post
          What does you contract with them say about this?
          Nothing apart from what I said -- price of parts/free labour is not defined in any way.

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            #6
            Without seeing the contract, I think it has to be implicit that the service provider can only be reimbursed the cost they incurred for the part. Write and ask for proof they paid £45.

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              #7
              When did you take out the contract?
              When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
              Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

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                #8
                Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                When did you take out the contract?
                Renewed about 11 months ago (from previous annual contract), the "free" service was carried out about 3 months ago.

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                  #9
                  If the "price of parts" isn't defined in the contract it should be read as normal English, which I think should mean the cost of the parts, not an amount arbitrarily set by the supplier.

                  Any term that was there allowing the supplier to charge their own price would probably be unfair under the Act.

                  The Consumer Rights Act contains a series of types of terms that "may be regarded as unfair" and a trader arbitrarily setting their own price which you're bound to pay would probably meet the criteria in 10 and 14.

                  Consumer Rights Act 2015, Schedule 2, Part 1
                  "Consumer contract terms which may be regarded as unfair"

                  10 - A term which has the object or effect of irrevocably binding the consumer to terms with which the consumer has had no real opportunity of becoming acquainted before the conclusion of the contract.

                  14 - A term which has the object or effect of giving the trader the discretion to decide the price payable under the contract after the consumer has become bound by it, where no price or method of determining the price is agreed when the consumer becomes bound.

                  But, as there isn't any such term, it's probably academic until they try and say that there is.
                  When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                  Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                  Comment

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