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Buying a new home? Ask these Qs about the boiler

Posted on 3/11/2019

Buying a new home is probably one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make. To find out exactly what you’re paying for, it’s important to ask the right questions before you commit.

Most surveys will only highlight structural issues, so to see if the utilities and appliances are all in good working order, you’ll need to ask additional questions. And making sure the property has an energy efficient and well-maintained boiler should be a top priority.

If you find out the boiler needs extensive repair work, you can ask the current owner to cover this as a prerequisite for your purchase. Or if that’s not possible, you can ask them to lower the price to reflect the cost of the work.

Here’s a list of questions to ask before you make an offer:

  • How old is the boiler?
  • What type of boiler is it?
  • When was it last serviced?
  • Has it had any issues since its last service?
  • Was the boiler replaced between now and the property’s last EPC?
  • How energy efficient is it?

About the boiler

The current owner should still have the boiler’s installation certificate, including its operating manual. If not, they should at least be able to tell you the type of boiler and installation date.

About its service

Ask the owner to show you a valid Gas Safety Record. This document highlights when the boiler was last serviced. Usually, gas appliances should be serviced annually. If the boiler has not been serviced in the last year, you can either ask the owner to arrange this before finalising the purchase or agree to pay a lower price for the property.

About its energy efficiency

The law requires an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) whenever a property is sold, rented or newly built. So the current owner should have this handy. If an inspector has highlighted the boiler as a potential issue, you’ll find recommendations on the EPC.

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