What do you need to know about your responsibilities as tenants?
Why must all maintenance issue be reported in writing?
Have you ever tried to ring the office to report a maintenance issue and been told it must be reported in writing?
Please believe us when we say, we are not trying to be awkward or unhelpful – it’s the law! All maintenance issues must be reported via nicholashumphreys.fixflo.com for our property management team to action.
Fixflo is also a fantastic portal for you to assist you to resolve any minor issues quickly without having a contractor come to your property!
Section 33 of the Deregulation Act 2015 seeks to provide tenants with protection against retaliatory evictions by requiring the landlord to show evidence that they have resolved (or are in the process of resolving) the issue before allowing them to issue a Section 21 notice. To activate this protection a tenant is required to put any complaint of disrepair in writing to the landlord, who is then required to issue the tenant with an adequate response in writing within 14 days that provides a description of the proposed action to address the complaint and sets out a reasonable timescale within which that action will be taken.
How can you help to get any maintenance issues resolved promptly?
If you are reporting an issue with an appliance, ensure you supply the make and model number when you initially submit your maintenance request. This will help us to instruct the most relevant contractor to address the issue.
Is there an error message showing? If so, search the internet for the error message. It may be an easy fix that you will be able to resolve without calling out a contractor!
If you suspect there is something faulty at your property, you must report it straight away. It may just need to be temporarily monitored, but it will help us to advise you on the best course of action before the issue escalates unnecessarily! You may also be liable for the costs if it becomes an issue that could have been prevented if we were notified when it initially occurred.
Emergency Call Outs
What do you do if you experience a maintenance issue after the office has closed for the day?
Please report your issue via Fixflo before contacting our ‘Out Of Hours’ contractor. As mentioned, Fixflo may be able to assist you with a temporary solution until the office reopens.
Examples of emergency maintenance issues are as follows;
- Gas leaks/carbon monoxide leakage – Please ring National Grid if you suspect there is a gas leak at your property prior to calling our out of hours contractors!
- Carbon Moxoide equipment alarm malfunction
- Sparking/smoking switch/socket
- Spillages of hazardous fluids/chemicals & sharps removals
- Water system or pump malfunction
- Fire *If there is a fire at your property, please leave the house straight away and call the fire brigade. Do not contact our Out of hour’s contractor as your first point of contact!
- Security alarm malfunction
- Window broken/access door damaged (if insecure)
- Theft/Attempted Theft *Please ring the police as your first point of contact before calling our out of hours contractors!
Please be advised, it is not the responsibility of our Out Of Hours contractors to attend your property if you have locked yourself out of your house/room or lost your key. You will incur any costs for a contractor coming to the property to gain access, therefore we recommend calling a locksmiths directly to reduce any costs.
Heating and Hot Water
Tenants need to properly use the provided facilities in the property. Any damage caused by the tenant knowingly or by incorrectly using the equipment in the property will breach the tenancy agreement. This means repairs will be either deducted from the tenancy deposit, or the renter will be required to pay for them.
Tenants are responsible for reporting all issues with the heating or hot water supply to the landlord. Here is what to look for:
- Faulty heating including leaking/inefficient radiators
- Water that won’t heat properly or does not heat up at all
- Showers with no hot water or barely warm
- If the radiators are working, but heating up inefficiently, there might be air trapped in the system. In this case, the radiator in question needs to be bled. If you have been supplied with a key for your radiator it will fall within the daily maintenance of the property and tenants are expected to perform it every time there is need for it.
If the pressure on your boiler has dropped, you will be able to locate an online manual by searching the make and model to re-pressure your boiler and bring your heating and hot water back to normal. If the problem persists, please report the issue on Fixflo.
When you first move into your property it is essential that you locate your fuse board! If your electrics stop working, this should be the first place you check! All switches must be up, if any have dropped
What if the electric continue to cut out?
Although our landlord often supply appliances at their properties, in the majority of cases, when electrics keep going it is due to the portable appliances that are brought to the house by the tenants.
- The easiest way to resolve this is by trial and elimination!
- Make sure all of the switches on the fuse board are up
- Turn all of your appliances off at the plug
- Gradually turn back on all of the appliances and monitor if/what trips the electrics
- If it is one of the tenant’s appliances, try it in another plug socket. If the problem persists you must stop using it the appliance immediately before it potentially becomes hazardous.
- If you are unable to locate the problem please report the issue via Fixflo
Drains and Pipes
Repairs such as leaking taps and blocked drains, sinks or toilets are usually the responsibility of the tenant, you will be liable for the cost if you have caused the issue.
How to avoid blocking your drains?
- Do not flush any type of cosmetic wipe down the toilet!
- Food and oil must be thrown in the bin and never put down the sink!
- Keep plugs clear of hair at all time – this is most common in showers and baths
- Do not wash mud/debris from shoes etc into your sinks
- Empty your pockets before washing your clothes
- If there is a macerator pump in your property, make sure it is turned on at all times and the instructions are ALWAYS followed!
If Nicholas Humphreys manage you property, we will test you fire alarms will be tested during property visits and also have annual fire tests carried out on the system. For the safety of you and your housemates we strongly recommend that you also regularly test your fire alarm.
Smoke detectors require little maintenance, but that maintenance could be life-saving. Testing your smoke alarm should be as simple as pressing a button on the alarm, If you are unsure please either search the make and model online or contact your property manager.
- Clean dust away wherever necessary
- Never remove the battery
- Report it immediately if your alarm starts to beep
Mould…what are the facts?
Mould is most commonly caused by lifestyle and a by-product of tenants activities in the property.
Often, our daily routine produces steam, causing condensation to accumulate in certain areas of the property. If condensation is repeatedly settling on the same surface, mould will begin to grow and quickly spread.
How can you prevent mould in your property?
It’s very important to allow enough ventilation through the property and to keep you extractor fans clear at all times.
What are the biggest triggers of mould?
Make sure you open windows and doors after having a shower! Bathrooms are a prime spot for condensation to quickly build up and cause an outbreak of mould!
Cooking on the stove
If you do not turn on your extractor fan or open a window when cooking the steam can begin to settle under kitchen cabinets or the ceiling.
Drying Clothes in your Room – especially on radiators!
When you dry your clothes on a radiator, water evaporates into your room. If there is nowhere for the water to go it will get absorbed by the walls and furniture, before long the mould will rapidly begin to spread through your room
Your furniture needs air circulation as well. Ventilate cupboards and wardrobes by opening the doors for thirty minutes. Leave space between the backs of wardrobes and the wall. Where possible, position wardrobes and furniture against internal walls, i.e. walls which have a room on both sides, rather than against outside walls.
Keep your property adequately HEATED!!
Bad heating through the property causes condensation and can allow for mould to grow in some parts of the property. During the cold months, heating must at an even level throughout all the rooms. If you only heat the bedroom, while the kitchen stays unheated the temperature difference will produce condensation in the unheated room and mould will start to appear.
The most effective way to keep your property heated is by setting the radiators or central heating system to work all the time and only provide slight background heating. This will be enough to keep the room warm enough to prevent condensation.