Having anything to do with the issue of an Electrical Certificate of Compliance when a property is sold can be an absolute nightmare at times. Here's one case that has me really scratching my head.
We get a written instruction to test the electrical installation of a flat - which we duly do, issue faults report, which is authorised, carry out repairs and issue a COC on the electrical installation in the flat. To be specific, the COC sets out the rooms, number of various electrical points, DB, etc. Very specific. Sale goes through - everyone gets their money - purchaser moves in and things start getting exciting.
We get called back because there are a number of problems.
It transpires that we have not tested and issued a COC on all portions of the property that has been sold. There is a garage and flatlet at the bottom that forms part of the sale agreement. At no point was this indicated to us in any way, means or form, and ordinarily this would all be relatively simple to establish where responsibility for this tidy little mess would lie - but not so lucky in this instance.
Now to give a better picture, this "block of flats" is really a house subdivided into residential units - and anyone who has seen such conversions will understand what I'm getting at here; it is quite often far from obvious just what parts make up a unit. With this one I still haven't managed to establish whether there are two or three residential units in the building. I haven't been out to take a look as yet. My partner has been dealing with it.
And here is where things start to get really messy.
All the garages, the flatlet in question, a pool, some of the buildings external lights and all the geysers are fed off a distribution board in one of the garages. This distribution board is fed off the distribution board in the flat we tested and issued a COC on. There is a redundant circuit breaker in the flat's DB marked sub-board - but no feed going off it. For some reason this sub-DB is being fed of a plug circuit breaker - along with a number of plugs in the flat.
So based on this, we are expected to figure out that there was a lot more that should have been tested. But wait - there's more.
Mrs. Purchaser is also the conveyancer for the transaction. Mr. Purchaser is an electrician.
Mrs. Purchaser, as the conveyancor, received all our documentation (well before transfer) which, as pointed out earlier is rather specific about what we've issued a COC on.
Mr. Purchaser is actually quite understanding of the difficulties of testing for COCs - that's why he doesn't do that particular line of business.
The seller, who has not satisfied the sales agreement or the law (essentially sold "electrical machinery" without a COC as required), is not taking calls and is not returning messages.
I'm still waiting on a ruling as to whether we're responsible for the subinstallation we did not issue a COC on.
Mr. & Mrs. Purchaser just want their COC on the flatlet and garage like yesterday because they're in the middle of alterations and have already technically invalidated the COC we have issued. They've already managed to remove a wall and wreck a light circuit in the process, and the painters have all the plug point covers off.
And I've got to make it happen!?