Hmo bills/ utility control over winter

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    #16
    andybenw,

    Thanks for reply and your input.
    this is exactly what I’ve done but the problem comes with policing this issue. It’s very easy for them to get rid of the portable heater before I see it. I’m realising the only way to solve this issue is to have me supply the electricity in all common areas of the house but fit an electric meter in all their rooms and they pay for their own electric in their personal spaces.

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      #17
      thumbnail_R0VcBYsgeAUfx3c7MREmnLoBW1OTRCZggJyjyVPi.jpg

      one of these in every bedroom as long as the supply is strictly for that room

      the problem is they will run extension cords from communal areas so you'll need these too

      products_image2-12759-d.jpg

      Personally, I dont see a major issue with the above AS LONG AS the gas heating is on when its needed and at the correct temp
      My views are my own - you may not agree with them. I tend say things as I see them and I don't do "political correctness". Just because we may not agree you can still buy me a pint lol

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        #18
        They'll just plug an extension into a socket on the landing and use the heater plugged into it, which will be even more dangerous.

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          #19
          Originally posted by DPT57 View Post
          They'll just plug an extension into a socket on the landing and use the heater plugged into it, which will be even more dangerous.
          Not if you lock all of the electric sockets (once the toaster, kettle, tv etc etc) are already plugged in - but it would only work as my post above with accessible sockets in each room and each room metered.

          I have 3 items in my communal area - coin metered washer, coin metered dryer and wifi router - and all 3 plug sockets are inside a locked cupboard to avoid any extension cables going into their metered rooms lol. It can be done quite well if planned.
          My views are my own - you may not agree with them. I tend say things as I see them and I don't do "political correctness". Just because we may not agree you can still buy me a pint lol

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            #20
            Originally posted by Hmoftw View Post
            Thanks for reply and your input.
            this is exactly what I’ve done but the problem comes with policing this issue. It’s very easy for them to get rid of the portable heater before I see it. I’m realising the only way to solve this issue is to have me supply the electricity in all common areas of the house but fit an electric meter in all their rooms and they pay for their own electric in their personal spaces.
            Or.

            Make sure you supply reasonable central temperature heating to rooms at a reasonable standard where the requirement for portable electric heaters isn't needed. The only time portable heaters were needed in my HMO over circa 8 years is when the gas boiler was down. I supplied the heaters (quickly) and took them back when they were not required.

            Obviously you have the problem of portable heaters already being in the property. Maybe explain the central heating temperature will rise to acceptable and have an amnesty (with you paying to take the heaters).

            I think if you go with electric meter route you'll have to be clever to avoid the extremely dangerous practice of long extension leads from common areas sockets feeding heaters in rooms. And once one person does it everyone will think it is a good idea.

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              #21
              Originally posted by landlord-man View Post

              Not if you lock all of the electric sockets (once the toaster, kettle, tv etc etc) are already plugged in
              Then they, or your cleaner will struggle to hoover the hallway and landing.

              Honestly, most tenants will find a way. As others have said there is only so much you can do. I would just get a thermostat you can limit or monitor remotely, set a cap on the included gas and electricity and keep cajoling them into behaving reasonably.

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                #22
                How do you "set a cap" on the usage ?

                At least your cleaner can have a key to unlock a socket for a hoover
                My views are my own - you may not agree with them. I tend say things as I see them and I don't do "political correctness". Just because we may not agree you can still buy me a pint lol

                Comment


                  #23
                  Originally posted by Hmoftw View Post
                  Thanks for reply and your input.
                  this is exactly what I’ve done but the problem comes with policing this issue. It’s very easy for them to get rid of the portable heater before I see it. I’m realising the only way to solve this issue is to have me supply the electricity in all common areas of the house but fit an electric meter in all their rooms and they pay for their own electric in their personal spaces.
                  and to achieve this you’ll probably need a full rewire

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                    #24
                    I'm not sure that more penny pinching is the ideal solution.
                    £ meters and locked sockets aren't a great look.
                    I suspect that the reason every tenant bought an electric heater is not because they are all completely unreasonable.

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                      #25
                      Ted.E.Bear,

                      I agree that its not ideal BUT it is a solution if the problem is as bad as OP claims.

                      YES ensure the heating is on at a high enough temp, and leave some leaflets from Age Concern (lol) about wearing layers.


                      I do have experience from a past life where hotel guests would indeed bring in portable heaters and then leave them on when they go out for the day. When some new holiday apartments were built, coin meters were added and obviously stopped the issue - there was still the odd one here and there but the guest was paying for it so not all bad.
                      My views are my own - you may not agree with them. I tend say things as I see them and I don't do "political correctness". Just because we may not agree you can still buy me a pint lol

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                        #26
                        I've seen properties where tenants have run an extension cable out of the kitchen window and up the wall to their bedroom to bypass their room meter.

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                          #27
                          I have owned 4 eight bedroomed HMOs for about 25 years now.
                          Electric heaters are, 1 heavy on your electricity bills.
                          2 Dangerous to use as you do not know if they have sneaked them into the rooms.
                          3 They can cause a fire if they are used through extension leads.

                          We as landlords have to give notice if we want to enter any of the bedrooms, So when we call the heaters are missing or obviously hidden.

                          During colder months we give adequate heating throught all of the houses, and the houses are never really cold.

                          The way I stopped the electric heater problems was to change all of the wall plugs with ones that have internal fuses in them.
                          I fit a 10amp fuse into the sockets, this allows TVs laptops and smaller kettles to be used in the rooms without any problems.
                          If a heater is used it blows the fuse.

                          When you are called by the tenant complaining that the electric has stopped working, you let them know politely that the socket has been overloaded by something that is faulty or something has overloaded the circuit.

                          If it persists, ask then what they plugged in when the power went off, they won't admit to using heaters, so you plug in whatever they said caused it, obviously it will work ok.

                          They will soon get the idea that heaters blow the circuits, especially if it happens at night and you tell them you can not call out until the next day.
                          Raymac

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                            #28
                            Originally posted by Raymac View Post
                            The way I stopped the electric heater problems was to change all of the wall plugs with ones that have internal fuses in them.
                            I fit a 10amp fuse into the sockets, this allows TVs laptops and smaller kettles to be used in the rooms without any problems.
                            If a heater is used it blows the fuse.
                            Raymac
                            Great idea but I've never heard of a fused socket, where do you get these from ?
                            Wouldn't they just change fuse ?

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                              #29
                              We bought them from wicks, the fuse is held in place by a little screw, change this screw for a little allen screw then they can;t change the fuse without having an allen key.
                              We bought the triple gang sockets because our council insists on more than 4 sockets per room.
                              https://www.wickes.co.uk/MK-13-Amp-D...White/p/195084

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                                #30
                                A 2Kw heater would run fine on a 10A fuse. So not a bulletproof idea.

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