Contracts for gas servicing and heating installations are offered by a broad range of organisations but can broadly be divided into two main categories, domestic and non-domestic.
- Domestic – typically local authorities, councils and housing associations, who routinely manage tens of thousands of residential properties which are rented by tenants. This is the dominant market, as landlords have a duty under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 to ensure gas appliances, fittings and chimney/flues provided for tenants are safe. This means regular servicing, annual safety checks and provision of a record that these checks have been carried out.
- Non-domestic – typically public and private sector organisations with significant property portfolios, including education, healthcare and civic buildings through to university accommodation and commercial offices.
The sector is dominated by SMEs and a handful of national providers, with contract values ranging anywhere from £100,000 to £5 million plus over a typical three-year contract duration.
As well as legislative compliance for landlords, the market is driven by the need for clients to deliver ongoing asset renewal and planned preventative maintenance programmes, with contracts generally requiring one or a combination of the following services:
- Breakdown and repairs – which often includes a 24/7, 365 emergency call-out service with prescribed response times and may include reactive installations.
- Inspection, servicing and maintenance – involving regular servicing, annual safety checks and issuing of Landlord Gas Safety Certificates and provision of a record that the required checks have been carried out.
- Planned replacement programmes – covering replacement of boilers or the entire heating system, as well as fuel-switch programmes, for example from electric storage heaters to a gas boiler, with work taking place in both void properties and occupied properties, which can add significantly to the challenges faced. In addition to this, some local authorities have carbon reduction targets and strategies to alleviate fuel poverty amongst tenants which, as well as driving renewal and upgrade programmes, places a greater emphasis on energy-efficient solutions.
In addition to these core areas, we also regularly support clients bidding for one-off contracts for the replacement and associated works of large central/community heating and boiler plant.