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Smoke alarm servicing, who has it done and who does it themselves?

Discussion in 'Repairs & Maintenance' started by Dylan33, 18th Mar, 2016.

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  1. Dylan33

    Dylan33 Well-Known Member

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    So. Who has their smoke alarm serviced and what does a service actually entail? $69 for someone to check the batteries once a year?
     
  2. Inov8ive

    Inov8ive Well-Known Member

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    I do this for my QLD properties for some reason. Seems to be the norm up there. Don't do it in any other state though
     
  3. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    We've done it ourselves for years, self-managing. Never thought it worth paying to have someone else do it.

    However, for a couple of years now, we pay $69 per year (a little less as we pay three years in advance) and they come to the property as many times as necessary. Sometimes that can be three times a year. They have insurance which covers our butt more than just us doing it ourselves.

    I used to scratch the date into the battery to ensure it was always showing that it was installed at the start of a tenancy. I noted it all on the lease and the entry condition report.

    When we got them in the first time, something I'd not realised was in two properties we had alarms that were out of date, and some houses needed extra alarms.

    So, this is one thing I'm happy that we've outsourced, and I no longer need to cart a ladder or get hubby to do so.
     
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  4. RiMo

    RiMo Well-Known Member

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    +1

    We've been using 1300 Smoke Alarms for a few years now. It is much more convenient for us to outsource this thing to them. They send you a reminder for the yearly inspection, check the alarms & change the batteries and they guarantee their service. A peace of mind really. The fee is a tax deduction and you can negotiate the fees if you have more than one IP.
     
  5. kermit

    kermit New Member

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    I rang Qld fire brigade regarding the requirement to test smoke alarms in rental properties. They advised that we could do it ourselves including vacuuming any dust (as per RTA guideline) and pressing the test button (no need for an electrician or specialized fire test firm), replacing batteries on annual basis. They recommend recording details on test sheet and getting the tenant to sign also if they are available.
     
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  6. DaveM

    DaveM Adelaide Buyers Agent & KFC Strategist Business Member

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    I have all my places done circa $90 pa. Irrelevant in the cashflow scheme of things and one less thing to worry about doing myself... my personal time is worth far more than running around changing batteries in houses.
     
  7. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    This is what I understand too, and what we used to do. If you see my post above from a year ago, it was surprising when we did get a testing company in to learn that we had issues with out of date detectors, and some houses needed more than we had.

    I wouldn't go back to DIY now that I've not had to worry about physically doing this. I just make one call and they do it. The fact they have insurance is peace of mind too.

    I don't even like to think about what would have happened to us if a fire happened and our detectors were out of date, or someone was hurt or killed because we didn't have enough detectors, or they were in the wrong place.
     
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  8. BKRinvesting

    BKRinvesting Well-Known Member

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    We outsource it also.
    PM organises it and we are happy to pay it.
    I see it as risk transfer. I now have formal documents in case of insurance, etc.
     
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  9. dan2101

    dan2101 Well-Known Member

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    If you live in the vicinity for the sake of 5 minutes of your time I'd do it myself. Very easy to check use by date of the alarm on the back. Put in a 10 year lithium battery alarm (keep receipt) in the correct place and away you go. Test once per year no need to even change the battery. Take a photo and record it's been done. Ass covered.
     
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  10. Otie

    Otie Well-Known Member

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    I pay $99 to have it checked/maintained annually.
    Wouldn't want it to be on me if there was ever a fire.
     
  11. Propertunity

    Propertunity Exclusive Real Estate Buyers Agent Business Member

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  12. Zoolander

    Zoolander Well-Known Member

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    If yours is an apartment, check with the building managers first. Some have alarm hardwired and so not use batteries. I use SAA (smoke alarms aus) for battery alarms and maintenance. Just check that they do in fact visit and conduct repairs - have caught them out stating they've visited when they're flat out lying...
     
  13. dan2101

    dan2101 Well-Known Member

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  14. neK

    neK Well-Known Member

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    i outsourced it.
    Paid 1300 smoke or whatever they are called $69 a year to check it.

    When the tenants moved out, i found 2 smoke alarm holders with no smoke alarms.
    I highly doubt the tenants would have taken it... they were even to lazy to clean black mould (caused by them) off the ceiling.

    Made me wonder what those guys actually charged me $69 for.
     
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  15. P j T

    P j T Well-Known Member

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    what is wrong with hard wired alarms?
     
  16. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    I think that in Queensland you also have to test and put new batteries in when you renew a tenancy (sign a new lease with same tenants). At least that is how I interpreted it and did that to cover ourselves.
     
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  17. Lemmy a fiver

    Lemmy a fiver Well-Known Member

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    Possibility of not working in a power outage.

    I outsource my detector inspections.
    Gets done yearly/get a receipt/small price to pay for safety of tenants & my property.
     
  18. dabbler

    dabbler Well-Known Member

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    Yes, that is what annoys me with some PMs, they insist on the every year thing, wher eI tend to think they should just go with the legislation

    on the other hand, they probably do not trust the tenants & probably see themselves as at risk if they do not chase this up, so is easier to just pass it off as a cost to LLs.
     
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  19. kierank

    kierank Well-Known Member

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    Yep, that is correct.

    We outsource ours for $69 per year per property. I couldn't be bothered to get out of bed for $69 - let someone else do it (and it is tax deductible).

    I don't want smoke alarms interfering with my lifestyle:) :).
     
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  20. dan2101

    dan2101 Well-Known Member

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    Yep correct @wylie aorry I should've clarified that.

    @Lemmy a fiver hard wired alarms have 9volt battery back up in case of black out.