What To Do In An Emergency

Support Within Working Hours ONLY

The tenancy agreement that you agreed to offers confirmation that the team here at Clarity can only help during office hours, that is, Monday to Friday from 9.00am until 5.30pm.  In other words, we need to make it obvious to you that we can’t, and don’t offer a hotel concierge-type 24/7 service.

In fact, no property agency could deliver on this, unless they charged sky-high rates!

Our service to tenants is limited to a duty of care only, and the landlord’s obligation to uphold the terms of the tenancy agreement, which does not always include immediate solutions.

To this end, your contract sets out the fact that reasonable action must be taken within a reasonable time frame.

Out-of-Hours Service

In a jam?  Don’t worry, our out-of-hours service, available on 01273 253000 will, by means of a recorded message, refer you to someone who may be able to help, but NOT necessarily immediately.  Please also note that an instant response cannot be guaranteed either, not least in the evening or at the weekend.

A serious note here:  we need to make it clear that whilst we understand your frustration, we won’t tolerate abuse under any circumstances.

Please Call: 01273 253000

Being a tenant affords you several beneficial safeguarding measures – and quite right, too.

Now, more than ever, landlords have a stringent duty of care to those renting their properties. The landlord must maintain the property to a high enough standard to ensure your health and safety.  It’s not a nice-to-have, it’s just the law.

As a property management company, we work on behalf of your landlord to take care of the maintenance, support, negotiation, and administration that would otherwise suck up a great deal of his or her time.

However, Clarity genuinely benefits all parties – you, your landlord, and the trades specialists with whom we work.  We’re regulated, consistent and accountable, meaning that within defined boundaries we’re here for you – quite literally, when your landlord may not be.  Otherwise, you may simply have access to a mobile phone number, which may be switched off.  Or, not answered.

IMPORTANT TENANTS’ INFORMATION

This page is in three main sections: firstly, information about our obligations to you and importantly, how your tenancy agreement limits these; secondly, what to do in an emergency; lastly, what from a contractual point of view prompts urgent action – and what will not. Please read these details carefully.   

This way you’ll be super-clear on what we CAN and CAN’T do – and how quickly we can do it.

How it Works

When you call us out-of-hours, you will be presented with clear information regarding what constitutes emergency or life-threatening situations (see below).

For example, regarding a leak or a flood, your call can be connected to a local plumber who will screen your call with a text, thus enabling him to assess the urgency of the situation. His analysis may prompt an over-the-phone diagnostic, with a priority-driven call-out appointment booked only if necessary, or a genuine emergency.

So, What is an Emergency?

The ONLY consideration of an emergency is where there is either:

  • Danger to life (fire, or the smell of gas), or that
  • If unattended, the issue will cause considerable and immediate further damage (such as a serious water leak).

SERIOUS WATER LEAKS

Where’s your Stop Cock?

As a tenant, you are obliged under the terms of your contract to know where your stop cock is.  Finding this and turning it off will temporarily stop the supply of water to the property while repair arrangements can be made.  Maybe check out how to do this on YouTube.

Super-important: if there’s a serious leak and you fail to do this, you may be charged for the damage that could have been prevented.  Yes, we know it’s unfair, so forewarned will be forearmed here.

Here’s where you’ll typically find it:

  • Under the kitchen sink
  • the under-stair cupboard in your hallway
  • In the cellar
  • In the hallway cupboard
  • Behind the washing machine
  • Under the entrance floor where you sometimes have the door mat (if accessible)
  • In the front garden near the boundary
  • Near the gas meters
  • Boiler room or plant room (if you have a commercial property)

Can’t find it?  Your neighbour may know, so it’s worth asking.

These images show you what a mains water stopcock in your property looks like:

GAS LEAKS – SMELL GAS

Don’t call us, you must report this IMMEDIATELY to the National Gas Emergency Service on 0800 111 999.

  • Don’t turn on any switches, including light switches. Turn off the oven and don’t light anything, like matches or cigarettes.
  • Ventilate the house
  • Locate the gas meter, turn off the gas.
  • Get everyone out of the house

What ISN’T an emergency?  The Top 3 Concerns from Tenants Are…

Getting locked out

Yes, this is really inconvenient, but not life-threatening – sorry.  You will need to call out a 24-hour locksmith or stay with a friend and wait for us to re-open in the morning.   Prevent this from happening by asking us if you can have a spare set of keys cut for your neighbour to hold on to.

Broken washing machine

Yes, annoying but not urgent.

A beeping smoke detector keeping you awake

Check that there isn’t any smoke.  Yes?  Dial 999 at once and vacate the property immediately.  No? Check the battery, as it may be running out of power.

An Option for Tenants

Please feel free to instruct your own tradespeople, in the case of an emergency.  However, you will be doing this at your own risk, and you may not be able to re-claim costs from your landlord.  Some short-notice tradespeople can be expensive.  And, should the work NOT be up to scratch, there may be extra charges to put things right.  Not forgetting potentially invalidated insurance and warranties

Are you sure it can’t wait until the next day for you to contact the team here?

In Summary

Here at Clarity, we’re here to help, not hinder. 

We always answer the phone promptly during office hours, and we like to think we’re a friendly bunch that takes a pro-active approach.

So, be nice, be courteous – and everything will be OK. Or, it soon will be.  

Work with us

Speak to a member of our team on 01273 253 000