CO poisoning, withholding rent, need advice urgently!

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  • red40
    replied
    Originally posted by veilside01702 View Post
    But nobody seems to want to tell me for sure if the certificates we were issued are correct / legal.... it appears the regulators Gas Safe are unwilling to say one way or the other...
    There does seem to be some discrepancy in what has actually been completed, information wise and what is actually required.

    As a minimum the installer has to include the following:-

    * a description of and the location of each appliance or flue checked
    * the name, registration number and signature of the individual carrying out the check
    * the date on which the appliance or flue was checked
    * the address of the property at which the appliance or flue is installed
    * the name and address of the landlord (or his agent where appropriate)
    * any defect identified and any remedial action taken
    * a statement confirming that the safety check completed complies with the requirements of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998

    With regards to the certificate legality, if you look at this link and look at the second question from the end may help you.

    Hope that helps a little. But really anything to do with incorrect certificates would be between Gas Safe and the installer. That doesn't mean you can explore other avenues if you feel you want to.

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  • havensRus
    replied
    Originally posted by veilside01702 View Post
    But nobody seems to want to tell me for sure if the certificates we were issued are correct / legal.... it appears the regulators Gas Safe are unwilling to say one way or the other...
    Best to do this in writing, so there's a paper trail. Write to them asking for an explanation. They are supposed to investigate and give you an answer.

    Leave a comment:


  • veilside01702
    replied
    Hi Red40, I checked the registration number and the Corgi one isn't the same as the gas safe one.... the engineer is gas safe registered and permitted to work on the appliance according to gas safe....
    But nobody seems to want to tell me for sure if the certificates we were issued are correct / legal.... it appears the regulators Gas Safe are unwilling to say one way or the other...

    Leave a comment:


  • red40
    replied
    Originally posted by veilside01702 View Post
    The LL and LA are responsible as the gas safety certificates that are dated June 2009 and are CORGI not gas safe, don't have the LL's details on them.
    There are obviously a number of issues here, however I should point out that landlords gas safety records can still be issued if they have the CORGI logo on them as long as the registration number matches the Gas Safe registration number and the installer is permitted to carry out works on that appliance.

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  • quarterday
    replied
    landlord's boiler out of action for eight weeks

    go to a CAB. They may well take on the case for damages against the L/L at no cost to yourselves. The judge isnt going to be sympathetic to the L/L. More enlightened landlords have their gas equipment covered under British Gas Service Contracts, or the like, and they do not accept open flued appliances into their scheme. Depending on how energetic you may feel, it may be worth contacting Gas Safe (previously known as Corgi) as I find it quite hard to believe that a Gas Safety Certificate could lawfully have been issued for the old boiler. You may find, for instance, that the tester was not properly qualified. Fat on the flames if you do decide to litigate for special/exemplary damages!

    Leave a comment:


  • Lawcruncher
    replied
    I think that those who are expressing sympathy with the landlord here are losing sight of something important. We are not talking about something like a leaking roof, draughty windows or mould on the walls - all of which are unacceptable - or even just the fact that the OP had to make do for far too long without central heating in very cold weather - also unacceptable - but the fact that the OP and his family ran the very real risk of dying of carbon monoxide poisoning. Instead of complaining of the cost of installing a new boiler and behaving unacceptably towards the OP, the landlord should be thankful that he is not facing a manslaughter charge.

    Even if, as I think is being suggested, there was no dodgy dealing concerning whether the boiler was properly checked and/or the gas safety certificate correctly issued and the landlord reasonably believed the boiler was safe, he ought not to have been in the position where, the danger having been identified and the boiler condemned, he was unable immediately to replace it. Too many landlords attracted to btl have acquired sub-standard property and operate without sufficient funds to carry out essential repairs.

    Leave a comment:


  • mind the gap
    replied
    Originally posted by Ericthelobster View Post

    If I'd been put in this position I'd be going for the jugular...
    Me too. With a big meat cleaver. And I'm a vegetarian!

    Leave a comment:


  • Ericthelobster
    replied
    Originally posted by Telometer View Post
    Possibly you have a case for the extra cost of the electricity, but I don't think you can prove that. And in any case you saved a fortune on gas. So I doubt you're out of pocket. You can only sue them for actual loss, and your actual loss is probably nil anyway.
    Dreadful story, and I'd dearly love to see an LL like that get his come-uppance. Agree you can't sue for what might have happened, even if you nearly died (which sounds not implausible). But I'd certainly have thought that there would be a case for being compensated for the illness and sickness you've all suffered as a direct result of CO poisoning. You should be able to get a report from A&E to back that up.

    If I'd been put in this position I'd be going for the jugular...

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  • islandgirl
    replied
    know I am emotionally involved and upset, but even the most jaded LL on here must admit they would be if their child were put at risk and then the LL tells you that you are unreasonable.....
    I agree totally. I am afraid I would be giving notice now and acting tough on the compensation (but putting the rent aside in case I had to pay it in the end). As is said above, each to their own and we all differ in our views. However I would be furious if my life and the lives of my family had been put at risk. Even then, if I had a proper response from the LL I would be willing to accept that these things sometimes occur. However given their response I would not be willing to compromise. But that's just me. I agree with MTG that it is awful that you have had to be put through this and I wish you a better LL next time - I assume you are looking for an alternative property.

    Leave a comment:


  • mind the gap
    replied
    From what you have told us, it would appear that your LL has behaved very badly. However strapped he is financially, it is not your fault and he should not treat you like that. LLs like him give the rest of us a bad name and I'm sorry you have been subjected to this.

    Leave a comment:


  • veilside01702
    replied
    Well the boiler was replaced as it was 23 years old and an open flu type system. The LL's own engineer agreed with us and told us his readings were 5 times the limit within the flu....
    The boiler even spilled Carbon monoxide whilst the engineer and letting agent were present testing it, the day after we were poisoned. The LL's engineer and the letting agent reconnected the boiler and told us to keep the door to the utility room closed so when it spilled again it didn't just fill the rest of the house with carbon monoxide. Basically leaving a dangerous boiler connected and refusing to do anything!
    The HSE inspector refused to reconnect the boiler as he told us it would spill again and he would not be responsible for killing someone.
    I don't agree we have no right to withhold the rent, but we are repaying it to be reasonable to a LL that has no regard for the lives of their tenants.
    In 7 weeks we didn't even have a call to see if we are alright from either the LL or the LA......
    The LA refused to talk to us and refused to give us the LL contact details or ask them to contact us......
    The LA and LL's gas engineer put my family at risk by reconnecting the appliance, knowing it was spilling carbon monoxide into the property.

    We have lost over £7200 in money from fostering alone.......

    The LL and LA are responsible as the gas safety certificates that are dated June 2009 and are CORGI not gas safe, don't have the LL's details on them.

    The LL even admitted to the HSE that she had suffered from headaches before she moved out, when we moved into the property.....
    When we moved in we found her CO alarm didn't work as it had no batteries in it.......

    I know I am emotionally involved and upset, but even the most jaded LL on here must admit they would be if their child were put at risk and then the LL tells you that you are unreasonable.....

    We didn't want any claiming compensation, american style suing everyone....
    All we wanted was them to ask if we were okay and talk to us...
    All they actually did was verbally attack us and tell me that our lives are worth less than a months rent..... Is that what a tenants life is worth?

    Leave a comment:


  • Telometer
    replied
    They did all they could; they had a gas safety certificate, the boiler was properly serviced, they provided CO alarms which worked, you didn't die from CO. And you now have a working CH boiler. I really don't see what your problem is. You have no right to retain any rent.



    Having said all that:

    I think you were incredibly good to your L waiting 8 weeks. A complete pushover, in fact. However, you did. And you owe them the rent. It's too late to complain about it now. Simple as that.

    Possibly you have a case for the extra cost of the electricity, but I don't think you can prove that. And in any case you saved a fortune on gas. So I doubt you're out of pocket. You can only sue them for actual loss, and your actual loss is probably nil anyway.

    Leave a comment:


  • havensRus
    replied
    Originally posted by islandgirl View Post
    HavensRus - at least they provided electric heaters? 3 small fan heaters? For 8 weeks? You and I have a very different view of helpful LLs I think.
    each one to their own.

    Leave a comment:


  • islandgirl
    replied
    I am afraid I would not pay the rent yet (speaking as a LL). This was a serious situation and he is unlikely to pay anything towards the electricity without a fight. However you must act fairly and quickly. Write to him explaining your case. Ask him for his suggestion as to a reasonable amount he would wish to give you. Struggling or not (who isn't) LL has no right to endanger life. HavensRus - at least they provided electric heaters? 3 small fan heaters? For 8 weeks? You and I have a very different view of helpful LLs I think.

    Leave a comment:


  • havensRus
    replied
    Originally posted by veilside01702 View Post
    The LL, the letting agent and the LL's father came round yesterday, for what we thought was to see the new boiler and check we are okay. How wrong we were, it was to demand we pay the months rent we withheld due to the lack of heating and most of the property being uninhabitable for 8 weeks. The day the heating came on I paid this months rent, but was asking the LL to pay for the extra electricity used by the immersion heater and fan heaters they supplied. We weren't asking for compensation or anything unreasonable, just for them to pay the extra electricity cost.....

    .....the father swore at us and it was all put onto us that they have to pay £3000 for a boiler and they need the rent money to pay for it, basically this is all our fault!

    Can anyone help please as I don't know whether to pay the outstanding months rent and then try to get the electricity money back later, or keep hold of it and let them try and get it back???

    We didn't even hear from any of them to see how we were, nothing..... My 18 month old son and I were in A&E due to CO poisoning and they don't even care.... the way they spoke to us yesterday was nasty and completely money motivated......
    Sorry to hear about the problems with CO and being ill. Thankfully you are ok now.

    Westminster has given you good advice.

    Its the LLs duty to maintain the GCH system, and unfortunately, there were problems, but these have been resolved. Likewise, it is also your duty to pay rent, so I agree that you should pay the rent.

    Have you actually costed the extra electricity and given them a bill for it?

    Your comment about them being money motivated ... is valid. Private landlords are in it to make money not lose money!! Where is the LL to get money from to do repairs if there's no rent coming from the property? £3K is not a small amount to shell out without warning!

    I think what is not widely known is that there are a lot of LLs out there that are struggling to keep it all together, and probably on the financial edge. The number of rent defaulters (working and HB) is on the rise, so for some LLs rental income is but a trickle. Therefore, big repairs such as boiler replacements can't be done just like that. When you add pressures from council or HSE, the result is unfortunately the verbal that you've experienced. Don't get me wrong, I am not defending the LL and I don't know if this particular LL is struggling or not. At least they provided electric heaters for you to use during the time the boiler was out of action.

    Pay the rent, so you get some peace for now, and you are seen to be doing the right thing. Then try and go through the avenues already pointed out to you, to get some compensation. At the very least give them the bill so there's something to work with.

    And if you are really unhappy there, look for somewhere else to go.

    Leave a comment:

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