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Intense heat in flat - estate agent/landlord refusing to help

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Author Topic: Intense heat in flat - estate agent/landlord refusing to help  (Read 112 times)
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« on: August 02, 2022, 06:35:44 PM »

Hi all,

I moved into my rented flat in February and have been experiencing intense heat in the flat ever since - I had to live with all of the windows open in February because it was so boiling! There is a cooling system in my flat but it costs a fortune (£150 per month) and I was not made aware that I would have to use to constantly (due to the excessive heat) when I moved in. In fact, they mentioned nothing about it. I cannot continue paying this amount of money but over the past 4 months the flat has been at around 28/29 degrees and it's unbearable to live in. I made a complaint a few months ago and the estate agent told me to dust the cooling system but it's clearly an issue with the flat. I can't sleep properly, i only get 2-4 hours because it's so hot. Opening the windows doesn't help and I can no longer afford to run the cooling system. I've made a more formal complaint to the estate agent and they replied with 'this isn't my landlord's problem'.

Does anyone have any advice on what I can do? It's not just because there's a hot spell, I've lived in 4 different flats in London (both new builds and old buildings) and have never experienced anything like this before.

There's no way a flat should be intensely hot during the winter months in the UK let alone 29 degrees everyday in summer. I would like to move out as it's now started to affect my physical and mental health but my contract isn't up until end of Jan. Any help or advice would be much appreciated.

Many thanks,
« Last Edit: August 02, 2022, 06:37:23 PM by lmk »
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« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2022, 08:23:56 PM »

Difficult to say. It really needs to be determined why the flat is so hot. Rather than going against the landlord/agent I’d seek expert advice on why the flat could be so hot.

Is it a communal heating system that is always on?

Until that is determined there’s not much else to do.
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« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2022, 09:10:05 PM »

I don't think you can go anywhere with this.

Sure, I suppose a Landlord has to provide accommodation that is fit for human habitation... but even if the property is known to be 'running hot' there is a cooling system in place... that's more than most properties would have. You are just refusing to use it - and not even because it's ineffective, because of cost - so that's your choice. Sorry, but them's the facts. It's really not the Landlord's problem that the price of utilities are so high... currently... in 2022 and beyond. It's also not the Landlord's problem that we've just gone past the hottest days since records began. These are things the Landlord cannot be expected to reasonably predict and, somehow, cater for.

So, on a legal footing, I doubt there's any remedy and I don't think you should hanker for one either. I'm not laughing at you here... but unless you can get evidence from a number of previous Tenants all saying it was always really unbearably hot and would be willing to swear on that... then the Landlord can just say - "no-one ever complained about it before" - and that's probably true, right? Because they all probably used the cooling system as and when it was needed. Because it was much more easily possible for them to do so... because energy costs weren't as high as they are now. So it might have cost £50 per month for previous Tenants and no-one kicked-up a fuss... they were just grateful they had a cooling system.

Additionally... why do I think that £150 per month extra for whatever you must be already paying in London is something we'd consider just.. noise level?

Now... onto the helpful bit... if you can get that idea out of your mind... do you think there is any chance of a reasonable, pragmatic, grown-up discussing happening with the Landlord... where you propose a minor rent reduction (maybe half of the £150 added cost you foresee) for the summer months at least? Suggesting a solution that gives the Landlord the chance to 'fix' a problem is often enticing to them. We Landlords do like to think that we are making lives better. And we like to do that with as little effort as possible.

I think that's what I would try... a formalised proposal rather than a formalised complaint. However, you've already started...  ;)
« Last Edit: August 03, 2022, 07:00:11 AM by Hippogriff »
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« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2022, 01:36:26 AM »

On review, they've provided a colling system. So they've provided you with your needs.
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« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2022, 11:33:20 AM »

I had an email from a tenant "The flat is freezing,this heater is useless".It was nearly new,so I went round to look before getting out the warranty. It was working fine.He was waving his utilities bill at me,despite having an economy setting he had turned it off and was in dispute with his utilities,refused to pay,because the "useless" heater was too hot.He tried to sue his previous landlord it turned out,over the same issues.
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« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2022, 01:37:56 PM »

What makes the property so hot?
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« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2022, 02:04:25 PM »

Friction.
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« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2022, 07:56:23 PM »

Thermodynamics (literally).



@lmk, what are the sources of the "intense/excessive/boiling" heat?

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« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2022, 02:08:50 PM »

There is nothing preventing you from moving out sooner,if you are prepared to pay the financial penalty.I know there are regulations about levels of heating in rentals,but not sure if they only apply to minimum temperatures.Have you spoken to others in the block to see if they have found a way around this that does not cost so much?
Would it be possible to fit a timer on the cooling system to limit the use and cost?
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