Tenant installed smartcard gas meter without consent

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • jeffrey
    replied
    I'd say:
    a. "...without first informing the Landlord in writing..."; and
    b. amend that 'where' bit so that it reads "; and if any such change is made the Tenant shall arrange..."

    Leave a comment:


  • Esio Trot
    replied
    For the avoidance of doubt, a clause such as follows should be within the tenancy agreement:

    The Tenant shall not change or cause to be changed any meter from credit to pre-payment card without informing the Landlord; where any change is made shall arrange for a credit meter to be re-installed at the end of the tenancy. Should the Tenant fail to have a credit meter re-installed at the end of the tenancy, the Landlord shall be entitled to reasonable costs for arranging this.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ericthelobster
    replied
    Originally posted by fthl View Post
    But the fact that it says there that you 'may need to pay off any outstanding balance first' implies that this is referring to an existing customer (and why would that person have any 'outstanding balance' on a prepayment metered property, unless it related to an earlier period, at which point he was presumably compelled to have the prepayment meter installed?). I really don't see it's likely that a new tenant would have to pay for its removal, unless they themselves have a poor credit rating.

    Leave a comment:


  • fthl
    replied
    http://www.britishgas.co.uk/pdf/payasyougo.pdf

    See page 8.

    Also OFGEM have been getting their knickers in a twist (and rightly so) about the greater cost of pre payment meters. I can perfectly understand a prospective tenant being put off by one.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ericthelobster
    replied
    Originally posted by fthl View Post
    sometimes there is a hefty advance charge to have a prepaid meter removed. Depends on the company.
    Really? Which companies do that?

    Leave a comment:


  • fthl
    replied
    sometimes there is a hefty advance charge to have a prepaid meter removed. Depends on the company. I think that if this is the case then it is reasonable to deduct any costs involved in re-instating the property from the deposit. Depending on your target market many tenants may not want a pre-payment meter, I believe that they can increase the fuel bills.

    Leave a comment:


  • davidjohnbutton
    replied
    The gas safety certificate covers appliances which are owned by the landlord only. So re-certification would not be required UNLESS an appliance was changed.

    The landlord is under a separate duty to ensure that the pipes from the meter to the connection point are fit for a tenant to have an appliance connected. So say for example a cooker point - as landlord I am responsible for the pipework from the meter outlet pipe to the bayonet fix point where the tenant can "plug" his gas cooker in - under those premises a GSC is not required - I went through this very carefully with the HSC when the fire brigade advised one of my elderly tenants that the landlord should have a GSC for the property despite there being only the tenants appliances connected to my pipework.

    Once however a Central Heating system was installed I have to have that checked every year after 1st year, but still under no duty to check the tenants appliances but as a matter of safety concern, I had the pipes checked at the same time.

    Leave a comment:


  • mind the gap
    replied
    Originally posted by Neil75 View Post
    For changing a Gas Meter? Is this definitly required as its never been done in about 4 meter changes iv had
    That does not prove anything, does it?

    Leave a comment:


  • Neil75
    replied
    Originally posted by TaxationPete View Post
    Did the installer re-issue a Gas Safety Certificate to the landlord. Very important and it is a legal requirement. Regards Peter
    For changing a Gas Meter? Is this definitly required as its never been done in about 4 meter changes iv had

    Leave a comment:


  • davidjohnbutton
    replied
    I believe requiring the tenant NOT to change utility meter types is an unenforceable condition both legally and practically.

    For legal reasons, it would be unacceptable to deny the tenant the right given to any person generally to have a prepayment meter installed when they get into difficulties, or for them to have one voluntarily installed because they have money management problems. BUT I would have to say that if I found out that any of my tenants who are on self-received LHA had done this without my consent, I would use that to show that the tenant was probably not capable of managing money properly and insist on payment to me direct.
    Apart from this, the tenant is the payer, not the landlord.

    As to practicalities, how can you stop it - usually by the time the landlord finds out its been done - the utilities do not report the matter of the tenants defalcations or choice to the landlord? So you insist its reverted - and deny the tenant any electricity/gas???

    The worry is of course that the utility may not change the meter back to what it was before or may not without charge to the landlord - but the landlord is not the contracted party so may be safely ignored by the utility.

    Then again the reverse situation - installing a credit meter as replacement for a prepay meter which again a landlord may desire.

    I allow changes of meters with my consent being obtained first merely so that I know who the supplier is when the tenant vacates.

    I had an interesting time about 15 years ago when British Gas installed a Quantum meter in one of my houses and the tenant fiddled with it by drilling a hole through the plastic front part. The meter was promptly removed on discovery and myself billed for £315 or so for a brand new complete meter as the landlord. BG did not report it to the police, so I did and the culprit was arrested and charged and convicted. I refused to pay the bill and held BG liable for loss of rent until they eventually realised they had no right to bill me for damage caused by a tenant and reinstalled a new meter. I asked without success why the meter could not simply be repaired - all it required was a replacement plastic window and I also asked where in the terms and conditions it made me liable for the criminal acts of another person. Fortunately this happened during the summer so I lost no rent.

    Amazingly, same house, several years later - forced entry and credit gas meter nicked - only thing taken in whole house - someone clearly on a prepay meter after some free gas!!!!!

    BTW, the Quantum meter shuts itself off if interfered with or removed - so landlords, a sure sign its been meddled with if you see "call help" on the screen!!!!

    Leave a comment:


  • TaxationPete
    replied
    Did the installer re-issue a Gas Safety Certificate to the landlord. Very important and it is a legal requirement. Regards Peter

    Leave a comment:


  • theartfullodger
    replied
    Which they are obviously doing their best to deal with!!! Would you rather they just didn't pay the bills?
    Agreed: Like I did when the electricity company 'phoned me & asked why the tenant was over £1k in arrears (naughty electricity company...!!) and when the same tenant told me she had filed for Bankruptcy... I'm sure we've all had similar experiences..

    As long as T recognises the priority of holding onto their home by paying the right rent on-time (as CaB & Shelter advise in debt situations) then it should be OK... but it's "interesting" at the very least to learn of tenant's money problems... makes me check the money is coming in correctly!

    Cheers!

    Lodger

    Cheers!

    Leave a comment:


  • Mrs Jones
    replied
    Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
    but take it as a sign they've money problems...
    Which they are obviously doing their best to deal with!!! Would you rather they just didn't pay the bills? I think you need to get things into perspective.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ericthelobster
    replied
    Originally posted by theartfullodger View Post
    So in your shoes I'd write T a calm polite letter advising him he must put things back as-was
    I'm not even sure I'd do that... it's really a non-issue and the OP would be better saving his battles for serious matters!

    Leave a comment:


  • theartfullodger
    replied
    OFT have ruled (please challenge them in't court & we'll all watch like we did with the Foxtons/OFT case..) a couple of things....see..

    http://www.oft.gov.uk/advice_and_res...onsumer/oft356

    Potentially unreasonable restriction

    [The tenant must not] change the utility supplier without the landlord's consent in writing



    Unfair term

    Term deleted.
    (Page 109)
    &
    Against changing the phone or utility

    The tenant should have the choice of supplier although he may be required to keep the landlord informed of any change and to return the account to the original supplier at the end of the tenancy.
    (Page 64, table 4.2)

    So in your shoes I'd write T a calm polite letter advising him he must put things back as-was but he can probably tell you to go-forth-and-multiply.

    I rent a couple of houses on what the English would call a council estate but in bonnie Scotland is known as a "Scheme" and, notwithstanding 4 Munros visible out of the front windows plus 2 sea-lochs and the occasional Eagle flying overhead it is a deprived area (well, I live there..) and I've concluded you just have to let the tenant change to pre-pay if they really want to.. but take it as a sign they've money problems... (However t'law is different up there anyway..)

    Cheers!

    Lodger

    Leave a comment:

Latest Activity

Collapse

Working...
X