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Landlords face emergency repair price hike over Christmas period

Private landlords could be charged up to 50% more for an emergency repair call out over the Christmas period, compared to the rest of the year, a new report claims.

New research carried out by TheHouseShop.com, designed to get estimated costs for emergency callouts in the two weeks over Christmas and New Year, suggests that landlords requiring services such as window repair, tree surgery, boiler engineers, and plumbers, could see a price increase of between 20% and 50% for emergency repairs over the festive period.

“Not only would the 20% - 50% cost increase be a hindrance to landlords but they could also struggle to book an appointment because many businesses choose not to operate during Christmas and New year, as they prefer to spend time with their friends and families,” said Nick Marr, co-founder of TheHouseShop.com.

Stephen Jury, spokesperson for home services marketplace, Plentific.com, agrees that landlords are likely to pay a Christmas price increase, in the event of an emergency.

He said: “Over the holiday period, plumbers, electricians and other tradesmen will often charge more than their usual fees, especially for emergency callouts.

“With the cold snap here, December will be a busy month and there will be a higher demand for quick fixes. If you are unlucky enough to need a callout around Christmas, you’re likely to end up paying as much as 50% more.”

This is a major concern for landlords because not only could they be faced with higher costs for an emergency repair but it could become more expensive if the problem is more complex to fix, such as replacing a broken boiler.

Christopher Gaudiv, owner of LondonSashWindows.com, commented: “In my experience working as a window repair professional, even before running my own business, landlords will experience difficulty in getting an emergency repair booked in over the Christmas week.

“Many business owners like myself will struggle to find someone willing and able to work, especially over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, so this is why our estimated costs could increase 50% from £320 + VAT to £480 + VAT, depending on the severity of the repair.”

TheHouseShop.com investigated further to find out how much landlords could expect to pay for minor maintenance work over Christmas. For services such as pest control, gardening, cleaning and waste removal, the price increase could be between 20% - 30%.

A spokeswoman for FantasticServices.com said: “Property maintenance issues don’t stop for Christmas so if a property manager or tenant needs something urgently fixed, their choice of service providers is practically non-existent.

“Here at Fantastic Services, we understand how difficult it is to get tradespeople to work over the Christmas period, and with that in mind, we are happy to provide all 25 of our services across all the bank holidays.

“For Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, all services provided will carry an additional surcharge of around 20% to 30%, which, in our view, is nothing compared to knowing that we are there to help if something goes wrong and needs urgent attention.”

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