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  • FIRST POST
    • reck_uk
    • By reck_uk 27th Jun 09, 2:23 PM
    • 111Posts
    • 38Thanks
    reck_uk
    How are HomeServe still in business
    • #1
    • 27th Jun 09, 2:23 PM
    How are HomeServe still in business 27th Jun 09 at 2:23 PM
    Got my usual bi-monthly begging letter from homeserver today asking me to take out their insurance cover for burst water pipes. Normally it goes straight in the bin but this time i'd thought i'd check what other people thought of them online as i'd heard they had a bad reputation from work colleagues, friends etc.

    So I went to google and did a search and was amazed at the overwhelming bad response I got. It seems at peoples hour of need homeserve hardly ever pay out, normally citing some clause in the terms and conditions. I search on this forum and some others as well and again I was getting the same message, WHATEVER YOU DO STAY AWAY FROM HOMESERVE.

    It just makes me wonder now that they have such a bad reputation how can they still be in business? I suppose they must have hundreds of customers paying their premiums each month not knowing that the when the day comes that they need their help the chances are they are going to be disappointed.

    Needless to say the begging letter went in the bin like all the rest.
Page 9
    • jk0
    • By jk0 8th Mar 18, 11:35 PM
    • 2,321 Posts
    • 24,844 Thanks
    jk0
    Came without stopcock spanner!
    Like many here I had Homeswerve for about ten years for plumbing & drains having received the papers with my water bill. A couple of years ago they sent a pamphlet offering to fit a remote stopcock switch above the worktop.

    This would have been ideal for me, as the internal stopcock here is seized, and the external one requires a particular spanner.

    Finally the guy showed up to do the work, but had no spanner for the Thames Water meter stopcock! He said it was up to me to call them to get the water switched off!

    I asked what would have happened in an emergency. Would they also have shown up with out a spanner, and required me to call Thames Water? He confirmed that would be the case!

    In view of that, the 'cover' seems pretty pointless, and I cancelled my policy.
    • MothballsWallet
    • By MothballsWallet 11th Mar 18, 12:54 PM
    • 12,341 Posts
    • 16,645 Thanks
    MothballsWallet
    Had an envelope put through my door emblazoned with the Severn Trent and HomeServe logos - on the back it says "Marketing information from HomeServe".

    I'm sending it back marked "unwanted, unaddressed spam" - I'm also opted out of unaddressed mail from Royal Mail but this was addressed "To The Homeowner".

    From what I've read online, I don't want cover with HomeServe.
    Always ask yourself one question: What would Gibbs do?

    I live in the UK City of Culture 2021

    I had to put mothballs in my wallet - the moths had learned the PINs to my cards...
    • Charlie20
    • By Charlie20 24th Mar 18, 6:33 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Charlie20
    How are Homeserve still in business
    Appalling experience with Homeserve which doesn’t sound unusual reading previous posts.
    We called out homeserve as were frequently getting an error code F/L which required us to re-start the boiler. The engineer came out and said it was the pcb board. He didn’t have the part so booked us another appointment for the engineer to fit the part. So far so good. However, a second engineer returned a few days later and said the first engineer was wrong and that the boiler was beyond economical repair, he also said it was leaking fumes and disconnected it. Before he’d even left the house we’d received a call to be offered a replacement boiler where we’d only have to pay the installation charge - one of the ‘benefits’ of the Homeserve policy. To cut a long story short, we were quoted for the installation at an extortionate cost which was basically as much as if we’d paid for the boiler in any case (we checked with another independent heating engineer what the cost of replacing a boiler should be). We were quite suspicious of Homeserve at this point so asked an independent heating engineer to come and look at the boiler. He found there was a simple fault with the ignition cable and probe which would be straight forward to rectify. He tested the boiler and found there to be no leakage of fumes/none of the other problems identified by the last Homeserve engineer to call (which had also not been identified by the first Homeserve engineer). In addition, he expressed the view that the boiler hadn’t been serviced for some considerable length of time which obviously wouldn’t have helped it function properly. Our Homeserve policy includes an annual service and we’ve had an engineer out yearly to service boiler... I then called Homeserve to explain my problem. They said there was nothing they could do as I was no longer covered ( I hadn’t renewed the policy when it came up for renewal after the boiler was condemned as I didn’t have a boiler to insure thanks to Homeserve). I challenged this for obvious reasons at which point they transferred me 3 times to different people. They kept saying they could only go off what their engineer had said - very unhelpful. They then put the onus on us to obtain a report from the independent heating engineer, I refused to do this on principle. After asking for details of their complaints team they then agreed to send another ‘independent’ engineer out to look at the boiler (although after asking who the engineer was employed by it transpires they are still employed by a company associated with Homeserve - not so independent after all). We will see what this brings but I am not optimistic. To summarise, it appears we have been paying for insurance and servicing for a year but the boiler hasn’t been serviced properly (or even at all) and neither has it been fixed when it developed a simple fault. I find it difficult to believe an organisation can behave in such a consistently incompetent and unethical manner. I also find it a complete conflict of interest that Homeserve own the company that replaces your boiler when it is found by them to be beyond economic repair. I would never take out any kind of insurance with them again.
    • jk0
    • By jk0 24th Mar 18, 11:01 PM
    • 2,321 Posts
    • 24,844 Thanks
    jk0
    Youtube: Plumbing insurance worry letters
    That's shocking Charlie. I would not let anyone from Homeswerve near your boiler IIWY, lest it mysteriously stops working again.

    Co-incidentally, I just saw this timely warning on Youtube. You can see that the letter mentioned isn't really from South West Water. It's actually from Homeswerve.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tp287uDUEmg
    • MABLE
    • By MABLE 26th Mar 18, 4:03 PM
    • 3,551 Posts
    • 1,869 Thanks
    MABLE
    My inlaws were paying £36.00 a month just for the plumbing side. I got them to change to BG and they get Plumbing, electrics, and boiler cover all for £30 a month and that also includes the annual inspection.
    • MABLE
    • By MABLE 26th Mar 18, 4:05 PM
    • 3,551 Posts
    • 1,869 Thanks
    MABLE
    Appalling experience with Homeserve which doesn’t sound unusual reading previous posts.
    We called out homeserve as were frequently getting an error code F/L which required us to re-start the boiler. The engineer came out and said it was the pcb board. He didn’t have the part so booked us another appointment for the engineer to fit the part. So far so good. However, a second engineer returned a few days later and said the first engineer was wrong and that the boiler was beyond economical repair, he also said it was leaking fumes and disconnected it. Before he’d even left the house we’d received a call to be offered a replacement boiler where we’d only have to pay the installation charge - one of the ‘benefits’ of the Homeserve policy. To cut a long story short, we were quoted for the installation at an extortionate cost which was basically as much as if we’d paid for the boiler in any case (we checked with another independent heating engineer what the cost of replacing a boiler should be). We were quite suspicious of Homeserve at this point so asked an independent heating engineer to come and look at the boiler. He found there was a simple fault with the ignition cable and probe which would be straight forward to rectify. He tested the boiler and found there to be no leakage of fumes/none of the other problems identified by the last Homeserve engineer to call (which had also not been identified by the first Homeserve engineer). In addition, he expressed the view that the boiler hadn’t been serviced for some considerable length of time which obviously wouldn’t have helped it function properly. Our Homeserve policy includes an annual service and we’ve had an engineer out yearly to service boiler... I then called Homeserve to explain my problem. They said there was nothing they could do as I was no longer covered ( I hadn’t renewed the policy when it came up for renewal after the boiler was condemned as I didn’t have a boiler to insure thanks to Homeserve). I challenged this for obvious reasons at which point they transferred me 3 times to different people. They kept saying they could only go off what their engineer had said - very unhelpful. They then put the onus on us to obtain a report from the independent heating engineer, I refused to do this on principle. After asking for details of their complaints team they then agreed to send another ‘independent’ engineer out to look at the boiler (although after asking who the engineer was employed by it transpires they are still employed by a company associated with Homeserve - not so independent after all). We will see what this brings but I am not optimistic. To summarise, it appears we have been paying for insurance and servicing for a year but the boiler hasn’t been serviced properly (or even at all) and neither has it been fixed when it developed a simple fault. I find it difficult to believe an organisation can behave in such a consistently incompetent and unethical manner. I also find it a complete conflict of interest that Homeserve own the company that replaces your boiler when it is found by them to be beyond economic repair. I would never take out any kind of insurance with them again.
    Originally posted by Charlie20
    Very interesting but difficult to take in with no paragraphs.
  • HomeServe company representative
    Hi there,

    Thanks for taking the time to get in touch.

    Let me start by saying the situation you have described is not representative of our company or culture. To clarify, we work with our network of directly employed engineers and carefully selected third party engineers. In instances where we are not able to complete a repair, we provide a new boiler should individuals, such as yourself, choose to pay for the installation costs. If a Customer pays for a boiler installation this becomes a private agreement outside of their agreement with HomeServe. That said, we recognise the difficulties you have experienced and I am glad we are sending out an alternative engineer to provide a second opinion.

    We would welcome the opportunity to speak to you about this in more detail. Please take a moment to get in touch with us, you will find all our contact details on our profile page. If you could provide your address details this will help us to locate your policy.

    Kind regards,

    Kayleigh
    Here To Help Team
    Last edited by HomeServe company representative; 27-03-2018 at 2:39 PM. Reason: Updated response
    Official Company Representative
    I am the official company representative of HomeServe. MSE has given permission for me to post in response to queries about the company, so that I can help solve issues. You can see my name on the companies with permission to post list. I am not allowed to tout for business at all. If you believe I am please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com This does NOT imply any form of approval of my company or its products by MSE"
    • Frankly101
    • By Frankly101 5th Apr 18, 8:37 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Frankly101
    Hmm. Where do I start. I used to work for Homeserve as a water engineer as they would call us. No qualifications required, promised a fully kitted out van with professional tools and instead you get a hire van with 2nd hand tools thrown in back from the last person who had enough. No sound listening equipment to locate leaks instead you get a wooden stick from the Victorian days and no tunneling equipment (mole) to lay new water mains instead you get an iron bar to tunnel manually with breaking your back and hopefully you won't hit a gas main or electric line as you thrust this heavy broom handle type thing back and forth trying to tunnel. What a joke. I had to chase my overtime payments for 6 months and I left in the end due to late wages and unable to complete jobs due to broken and insufficient tools. I was embarassed to go back to customers and explain the situation or should I say make up lies to pass them off..

    The managers are immoral, selfish and only after money, they don't care about old people or kids in dangerous environments. I witnessed other engineers weeing and pooing in bottles and bags in the back of thier vans.

    This is a true reflection of how this company works internally. They will promise you a lot and give when you actually need it.

    Stay away from Homeserve!
    • Frankly101
    • By Frankly101 5th Apr 18, 8:39 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Frankly101
    They will promise you a lot and give nothing when you actually need it..
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