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Tenant request for extra heater in flat

Hi

I have a studio flat with a new tenant just moved in. With the flat I provide 2 oil-filled electric radiators (as there is no gas so no central heating). The tenant has complained he had to run both the radiators on full for 16 hours to warm up the flat and asked I buy a convection heater to use as well, due to concern for his electricity bill. I find this surprising as I lived in the flat for 3 years and those 2 heaters are more than sufficient to heat that space. The previous tenants informed me they only ever used one of the radiators as the flat heated up so quickly. He was informed before taking on the flat of the heating situation…I have been accommodating and complied with all other things he has requested, but this I feel it is getting too demanding. I’m inclined to say I have provided sufficient means to heat the flat and he will have to buy his own third heater if desired. Wondering what others would do in this situation?

They do not cost much to buy. It is very cold at present. We all have different levels of warm comfort . I would buy one

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yes little money to buy another heater as per colin3, why not. A couple of points come to mind though, i presume you have PAT tests for these portable heaters and secondly also assume your EPC rating is minimum E?

its just that i had a block of flats a while ago with portable heating and struggled with epc ratings.

The new “high retention” storage heaters are a step up from the old ones and electric heating is now coming into vogue, depends how long you intend keeping the flat.

Does anyone know when minimum rating EPC “D” is likely to come in??

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The manfacturers warranty covers for the first year

If you wire them in to a fused spare and wall mount so they are not portable, it is a safer option

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I believe they are proposing the minimum rating of C will apply from 2025. That’s going to be very hard to hit for electric heating unless you have a heat pump which is difficult for flats.

Agree newer storage heaters are better but these depend on low off peak rates. Traditionally this was due to coal power which will be stopped shortly and given the switch to electric cars which will primarily be charged overnight I doubt off peak rates will be low enough to make storage heaters viable.

Agree that best for Ceri to buy a convector heater as oil filled do take a long time to heat up when cold, be careful with power rating of plug in heaters soit doesn’t overload the sockets electrical ring circuit as having 3 plug in heaters plus using kettle and other things at same time can overload it if it isnt designed for it. It should all shut down but isn’t good for electrics if done a lot.

I put electic convector heaters in one flat but wired up on seperate cable to the ring main so as not to overload. Own circuit breaker at the box

thanks for that, is there an interim date for D EPC ratings to become mandatory do you know?

in smaller flats i think storage rads can make sense as boilers need space and servicing. With larger flats gas is obviously prefereable just now , however the goverment are pushing electric boilers which may need upping your incoming supply to 100A and in some of the older properties this may be tricky.
UK Power networkis charge in my opinion really excessive fees and it was a dark day when the electrical infrastructure was nationalised but it is what it is

Wasnt aware it was changing to D. Had a quick look and it seems to be for Scotland only from 2022 for change of tenancies. England is staying e with the proposal to change to C in 2025.

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I PAT tested everything and have an EPC rating of D. That’s part of my hesitancy to buy another heater as if I provide it I will need to get a PAT test on it, and possibly get a new EPC? which means it starts to become more of a cost. (I don’t make profit off my let - it is simply to pay my mortgage until I can sell).

Though I’m confused as to the feedback of a convection heater being more economical. I got the oil filled ones as after researching it they seemed the most efficient way to heat, though they do take longer to heat up they maintain heat a lot better.

PAT tests aren’t mandatory unless it is a hmo which a studio presumably isn’t. You need to take reasonable precautions to ensure electrics are safe, a new heater would be considered safe.

You wouldn’t need a new EPC as you haven’t changed the type of heating, oil and convectors would be considered the same.

They are both as efficient as each other. With electric heating 1 unit of electric power will always produce 1 unit of heat output, the difference is how they heat, connectors will heat quicker but heat isnt as consistent while oil filled will heat themselves before the room and will continue heating room after they are switched off, but normally give a more pleasant experience. A combination normally works best but depends how long a tenant is home for.

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I would buy a thermometer and measure the temperature .If it is less than 21deg C ,then buy a new heater.

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Goverment seems to be thinking more along the lines of jumping staight to minimum “C”. Also note the gov intention to phase out gas heating. If you are investing for the long haul consider future proofing now. Watch this space.

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Even if you provide another heater (or wooly jumper) the next thing will be tenants claiming high heating bills and fuel poverty. Can you say that the rent level reflects the heating provided? Revisit your EPC rating and its recommendations, and consider future proofing your investment. Also review HHRS guidance which considers excess heat and cold.

Doesnt cost much so I would just buy one. Not worth the aggro for the sake of a few pounds. Happy tenant, happy life.

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Is PAT testing a legal requirement for landlords ? Portable Appliance Testing is not an official legal requirement for landlords in England and Wales, however, it is considered best practice. The government state that landlords must make sure “the electrical system is safe” and “all appliances they supply are safe”.25 Aug 2020
if i were you even tho its not legally required i would take a photograph of your heaters when you do your annual inspection and check the cable/ plug etc. personally if they want a heater i just give them the heater, say its theirs to keep and do an e mail to confirm. usually they leave them anyway but its one less exposure for the landlord.

Ah thank you! I have a bit more of an understanding on it now. Not so bad then if I literally just have to buy the heater

I suggested to him that as I aired the place for a whole day with all windows open before he moved in (as I was painting/cleaning) and it was empty a few days, it may be simply it requires some time to get up to heat. Will see how he gets on as I’m genuinely surprised - I used to have that place insanely hot. Storage heaters I agree are a good future consideration.

At least you were honest and upfront about the inadequate heating provision in your flat. A few years ago I entered into a letting agreement for a student flat through Kings estate agents for one of my offspring. I made the mistake of assuming that it had installed heating of some description (gas or storage) and even thought that this is an explicit requirement in housing law. Big mistake; cost me over £3000 thanks to the dishonesty of Kings estate agency who should have pointed out that the property had no heating system. Afterwards I understood why they were so anxious to get me to sign one of those one year contracts online and take £3000 up front. If there were electric heaters dotted around I would have clocked. Call me an idiot if it makes you feel better but the dastardly agency said i owed them a years rent and threatened legal action. In the end I had to track down landlord and did a landlord to landlord plea: please release me from the contract and I wont oppose the release of the deposit from the deposit scheme. Otherwise the only winners will be Kings and their solicitors. So why has my sob story got anything to do with Ceris predicament. The moral of the story is just hope youve got a decent tenant that pays his rent on time and I wouldnt worry about buying a fan or convector heater that would probably warm the space adequately and hopefully safely seeing as the property has no heating system.

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Do you supply curtains and is the floor wooden? Putting in thicker curtains, draught excluders on doors and windows and putting down thick rugs if its wooden flooring can all make a big difference