hotpoint fridge Holiday Home

hotpoint fridge Holiday HomeInvestigations into the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower have pointed towards a faulty Hotpoint fridge freezer being the cause. The government said that further tests are being carried out by the manufacturer. However it has already been confirmed that model was not subject to any product recall.

Whirlpool, who owns Hotpoint, said: “We offer our most profound condolences to the victims, those who have lost loved ones, homes, and possessions, and to their friends and families.”

As holiday home insurance specialists we feel a duty to help you as a holiday homeowner to keep informed in order to help you protect your family, friends and paying guests and keep them safe.

What should you do if you have a Hotpoint Fridge Freezer in your home or holiday home?

Anyone who has a white Hotpoint fridge freezer model number FF175BP or graphite fridge freezer model number FF175BG should register their appliance with the manufacturer to receive any updates. Generally, the model number is found on a bar code on a sticker behind the salad container in the fridge.

These models were discontinued in 2009, however 64,000 were sold between March 2006 and July 2009. It is not known how many are still in use. Owners should ring 0800 316 3826 or visit the Hotpoint website.

House fires connected to fridge freezers and other electrical appliances are all too common, thus empahising the importance of regular inspections and PAT Testing of the appliances in your holiday home. Further guidance for holiday homeowners on electrical and fire sfety can be found by following the links below:

Boshers offer specialist holiday home insurance to owners across the UK. Require a quote for your holiday apartment, cottage or complex? Please give us a call on 01237 429444.

holiday home electrical circuit safe

holiday home electrical circuit safeThere are some items in modern life we just couldn’t do without, whether in the home or whilst on holiday; kettles, coffee machines, toasters, microwaves, TV’s, Hi-Fi’s and mobile devices. These all play a central part of our days, as they will be for those visiting your holiday home. What they all have in common is the need for reliable mains power. As a responsible holiday homeowner you have a duty of care to ensure the safety of your guests. Is your holiday home electrical circuit safe and how do you ensure that it is and remains so?

What are the risks posed by electricity in your holiday home?

The main risks are:

  • Electrocutions and fatal electrical burns

Statistics from 2010 show that in one year 28 deaths occurred in Great Britain due to electrocutions. 6 of these occurred in the work place and 22 were home or leisure related.

  • Electric shocks

A staggering 2.5million people receive a non-fatal electric shock per year, of whom 350,000 receive a serious injury.

  • Accidental electrical fires

In 2011/12 there were 20403 fires of an electrical origin in Great Britain. 2471 of these related to the electrical installation and directly accounted for 8 deaths and 167 injuries.

How old is your fuse board? It may be time to replace it for one with RCD’s

Interestingly a DTI report estimated that 20% of electrical fires could be prevented by the presence of an RCD. RCD’s (Residual Current Device) form an integral part of modern fuse boards. They are very sensitive and trip the electrical circuit at the first sign of a problem.

Source: Electrical Safety First Core Data Set

Your responsibilities as a holiday homeowner

Under the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 and the Health and Safety at Work Act, you have a duty of care. This duty extends to both your holiday lets’ electrical appliances and the electrical circuit.

There are no specific requirements when it comes to the frequency of checks to ensure the electrical circuit is safe. However it is still important to comply with your duty of care. The best way to do this is to engage a professional to conduct an electrical safety inspection.

Conduct an electrical safety inspection

It is best practice to have an electrical safety inspection before you welcome guests into your holiday home. Whilst this is not currently a mandatory requirement for most individual holiday homes, it is widely regarded as best practice. Having an electrical safety inspection will demonstrate that you take safety seriously. Remember your duty of care extends towards your guests and the employees and contractors who maintain your holiday home.

An electrical safety inspection is a common requirement of a quality holiday letting agent, they’ll often require proof before advertising your cottage. Holiday letting agents will have reliable tradesman and will put you in touch with qualified electricians in the area. They are also a basic requirement of the quality assessment schemes which are run on behalf of our national tourism boards.

An electrical safety inspection comes in two parts, and involves (1) an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) which looks at the safety of the electrical wiring circuit installations, fixtures and fittings – and (2) a PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) check.

Top tip: An Electrical Installation Condition Report may be included in the cost when upgrading your fuse board to a modern one incorporating RCD’s.

Electrical Installation Condition Report

As a general recommendation, an Electrical Installation Condition Report should be carried out every five years. This will vary depending on the age of your installation, and if there has been any problems or damage during that period, such as an escape of water. These tests should be carried out by a registered electrician who is qualified to perform them. Any recommended remedial work should be followed through as soon as physically possible.

Once the inspection and any necessary work is complete, obtain a certificate and keep it safe, furthermore your holiday home letting agent may require a copy.

Top tip: ask the electrician who inspects your holiday home electrical wiring circuit for guidance on regular visual inspections that it would be wise for you to make in between each Electrical Installation Condition Report. Keeping a record of such visual inspections will demonstrate that you take your guests safety seriously and may just prevent an incident.

PAT Testing

As well as large fixed wiring installation checks, you should also frequently carry out visual checks on all electrical appliances. From the little things like hairdryers, to larger items such as your fridge and washing machine, you’ll need to give them a visual once over on a regular basis. Check for broken plugs and frayed mains leads, if in doubt have them inspected and repaired by a professional.

It is a general recommendation that portable appliances in a holiday home are checked periodically for faults. This should be done by a competent person, preferably annually. To learn more about Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) checks in holiday homes click the link below:

All holiday homeowners want their guests to have a great time. Having a procedure for checking electrical items in place helps ensure this, as a result you’ll be meeting your duty of care and in addition you’ll also be ensuring they have a safe and enjoyable stay.

Your holiday home insurance

Maintaining a record of when appliances were purchased demonstrates good practice. Staple the receipt to a piece of the packaging which identifies the item and keep them safe. Don’t forget to place a copy of the user instructions in your Welcome Information Folder. Keep copies of your Electrical Installation Condition Report and certificates issued for your Portable Appliance Testing checks when undertaken. Showing that you’re responsible, compliant and have made every effort to keep your guests safe will help smooth the claims process should there be an accident or injury in your holiday home.

Whilst reading this article you’ve probably been asking yourself if you have taken all possible measures to protect your holiday home visitors? We have other articles on these subjects, here are links to a few which may be of interest to you:

Boshers offer specialist holiday home insurance to owners across the UK. For more information on how a specialist insurer can help and support your holiday home business, please give us a call for an insurance quote today.

Quality in your holiday home

Quality in your holiday homeAs a holiday homeowner delivering quality in your holiday home needs to be at the heart of everything you do. It will make people want to stay with you, and also keep them coming back.

In order to deliver quality in your holiday home you need to be continually committed to it; as Aristotle once said ‘quality is not an act, it’s a habit’.

So what should that commitment really look like and what should it involve?

We take a look at just a few areas where you should ensure your commitment to quality never wavers…

Holiday Home Maintenance checks

Over the years more and more electrical items have been added to the average home and this is no different in holiday letting properties.

So how do you ensure they are all safe for your visitors to use, and that their quality is uncompromised? Particularly if you live a good distance from your holiday home?

You have a legal obligation to make sure that any electrical appliance with the potential to cause injury is kept in a safe condition for visitors to use.

Whilst there is no stated legal requirement on the frequency of checks it is advised that you take a proactive approach to ensuring the appliances in your holiday home are in full and safe working order. For example inspecting appliances for obvious signs of wear and tear such as frayed electrical leads during each changeover is good practice.

Remember that not all faults will be visible; consider using an approved contractor for annual PAT testing and ensure all work is completed to the highest of standards.

You can read more about this here:

The quality of those appliances

Many of us will have at some time muttered the words “you get what you pay for!” or “buy cheap buy twice”.

Whilst it can be tempting to cut back on the quality of the appliances in your holiday home to reduce costs, give some consideration as to what this does to the overall quality experience this provides your guests.

Also consider how regularly you update and replace the items within your holiday home; having a cyclical plan for when items are to be updated can ensure you’re always on top of quality upgrades, whilst also spreading potential costs evenly across the year (which can also be advantageous from a tax perspective). Quality assessors be they from the various tourist board affiliated schemes or from your holiday letting agent will give their highest ratings to letting properties that are fitted out to the best standards.

A tidy holiday home is a happy holiday home

You only get one chance to make a first impression, so are you making the right one? With visitor expectations, experience and marketplace knowledge growing year on year it is becoming increasingly important that the cleanliness of your holiday home matches the expectation of your latest guests, making cleaning and housekeeping a critical factor in continually delivering quality.

Some letting agents will manage this process for you by using an inhouse housekeeping team, others will introduce you to proven and reliable housekeepers or holiday letting management companies. These options can be particularly advantageous as they will take on the responsibility of quality control, and the other factors that could become time consuming and expensive, such as the hiring and organisation of staff.

If you are employing housekeepers directly ensure that you take up previous references, and also develop a comprehensive list of duties that need to be completed in order to ready your holiday home for changeover. This way nothing will be missed or left to chance. Also ensure that your holiday home insurance policy includes employers liability cover which is required by law.

Finding the right suppliers

Whether it’s a lick of paint or a refresh to the décor of your holiday home, it’s likely that in your search for continued quality, changes will need to be made in order to keep it looking as fresh as you want it to.

When it comes to larger work being carried out on your holiday home it’s vital you use a quality builder. The Federation of National Builders ( offers a comprehensive list of approved builders, or alternatively discuss with your letting agent to find if they have any locally approved suppliers.

Keeping visitors safe

It won’t always be the first thing you may think about when it comes to discussing quality in your holiday home, but a safe cottage is a quality cottage. Whether you’re installing a wood burner or new gas cooker, ensure you use specialists who carry out all work to the legal standard.

Also be aware that since last March, the Government made it compulsory for all landlords including holiday homeowners who let their properties as a long let during the low season to have working carbon monoxide and smoke alarms installed in their properties. This is also widely becoming regarded as best practice for all holiday letting properties.

You can read more about carbon monoxide and fire safety here:

Quality assessment

Bodies such as VisitEngland, VisitWales, VisitScotland and the AA have rigorous schemes for self-catering accommodation. Gaining recognition for your accommodation in this way is one of the most effective ways of proving you are committed to quality, and potential bookers will immediately understand the quality you provide when they see your star rating.

If you’re delivery quality in your holiday home and currently looking to apply for one of these schemes, or looking to increase the star rating of your property, please take a look at our blog post here:

Boshers offer specialist holiday home insurance to owners across the UK. For more information on how a specialist insurer can help and support your holiday home business, please give us a call on 01237 429444.

Holiday Letting Guest Safety

Holiday Letting Guest SafetyAs a holiday homeowner there will be plenty for you to think about; how are bookings looking? Which letting agent do you use? Is the cottage in need of repairs and when does the next tax return need to be submitted by?

With such a long list, one thing you’ll need to keep at the very top is holiday letting guest safety. Your commitment to providing your guests with a stay that is not only enjoyable, but also safe is paramount.

Staying up to date with latest legislation changes set by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is essential for anyone in the industry in order to protect themselves and their guests.

We’ve highlighted some of the key areas of holiday letting guest safety you need to be considering that will help you understand your obligations.

Gas safety – what do you need to do?

There have been more than 200 reported gas safety incidents in the UK over the past year, with 40 people tragically losing their lives as the result of the poisonous, odourless and silent killer that is carbon monoxide.

The consequences of getting gas safety wrong can be loss of life so it’s essential you’re doing the following:

  • You are now legally required to have working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms fitted within your holiday home. These should be installed in rooms in which there are gas boilers, fires or any fuel burning appliance or open fire.
  • Your gas boiler and any other gas appliances must, by law, be serviced and have a gas safety check carried out by a Gas Safe Registered Engineer every year.

If you are a letting agent you should obtain Gas Safe Check certificate from the holiday homeowner annually to ensure this has been carried out and that the property is safe for guests. For further information on gas safety read our blog post – Holiday Home Gas Safety

Up to date Gas Safety Check Certificate(s) or a copy should be kept in the holiday home’s Welcome Folder Information Pack to give guests peace of mind.

Preventing fire – what do you need to do?

Fire Safety Law (known as Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005) was introduced in 2006 and makes holiday homeowners responsible for taking measures to protect guests from the risks of fire.

  • As a holiday homeowner you are required to conduct a fire risk assessment, improve fires safety measures as a result of any issues highlighted in the assessment, and keep the risks and measures under review. For more information on how to conduct a fire risk assessment please read our blog – Fire Safety Law for Holiday Letting
  • Despite 88% of fires being accidental, it is vital that you remain vigilant in reducing any potential risks in your holiday home and this should extend to your furniture. Regulations, whilst largely focussed on manufacturers, now extends to the ‘supplier of furniture acting in the course of business’, which of course applies to the owner of the holiday home.  For full information on the requirements you need to meet please read our blog post –  Fire Safety of Furniture and Furnishings in your Holiday Home

Electrical equipment

Over the years our homes and cottages have become awash with electrical appliances and devices. They bring with them convenience, but also an on-going maintenance task. So what do you need to do in terms of checking and replacing your appliances?

  • You have a legal obligation to ensure that any electrical appliance in your holiday home with the potential to cause injury is kept in a safe condition for your visitors to use.
  • Conduct regular visual checks of your appliances, or if you live a good distance from your holiday home, ensure someone is given responsibility for this task.
  • Remember that not all faults will be visible. Whilst there is no legal requirement for you to undertake Portable Appliance Testing (PAT), it is good practice and will help to demonstrate a general duty of care if these checks are carried out in conjunction with regular visual checks.
  • If a visitor reports a potential fault with an electrical appliance ensure it is removed from the holiday home until such time that it can be examined by a professional, or replaced as required.

You may also find the following posts for holiday home owners of interest:

Boshers offer specialist holiday home insurance to owners across the UK. For more information on how a specialist insurer can help and support your holiday home business, please give us a call on 01237 429444.

Please note that this article on holiday letting guest safety is only intended as an overview of what you need to be doing in each of these areas.  For further information please contact the relevant authority and read up on all procedures and requirements.


PAT Testing and holiday homes

PAT Testing

As a holiday homeowner it’s vital you keep your property as safe as possible for your visitors and that this extends to all areas including maintaining electrical appliances in your holiday home. PAT Testing and holiday homes

Over the years more and more electrical items have been added to the average home and this is no different in holiday properties.

A wide range of gadgets are now commonplace in the kitchen, hairdryers and other health and beauty items have made their way into the bedroom and bathroom, with games and television devices now taking centre place in the living room.

There is an abundance of electrical appliances spread across the average property.

So how do you ensure they are all safe for your visitors to use? Particularly if you live a good distance from your holiday home?

What is PAT testing?

Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) is an examination of electrical appliances that checks for potential defaults that are not obviously visible.  It’s important to highlight that whilst an appliance may appear fine to the eye and be in working order, it doesn’t mean that it is safe from defects and potential risk.

PAT testing should be carried out in coordination with visual checks; if your visitor reports a potential default with an electrical appliance it’s important it is checked as soon as possible and in the mean time not used.

Is there a legal requirement to PAT test your electrical appliances?

You have a legal obligation to ensure that any electrical appliance with the potential to cause injury is kept in a safe condition for visitors to use.

Whilst there is no stated legal requirement on the frequency of checks it is advised that you take a proactive approach to ensuring the appliances in your holiday home are in full and safe working order.

The nature of the appliance, along with the amount that it is used, should be considered when addressing how often you should be inspecting the item.

For example, it may be prudent for holiday home owners to check items before the busy summer period to ensure items are up to date and checked before they are used regularly over a prolonged period. It is also good practice at each changeover for your housekeeper or maintenance team to carry out a visual check on each appliance to check for damage such as fraying power leads or broken plugs and replace or repair as appropriate. It is also best practice to keep a record of such checks.

Do I need to label items once they’ve been tested?

On some electrical appliances you may have seen PAT test labels stating the last date on which they were inspected.  This again is not a legal requirement but is a good method of ensuring there is a clear record of when testing has been carried out, along with demonstrating that you have a maintenance plan in place for your holiday home.

Do I need a professional electrician to carry out my PAT test?

Whilst you’ll be able to carry out visual and basic inspection on your appliances, the person carrying out the full PAT test will need to be competent to do so and also have the equipment in order to undertake a full test.

It’s therefore best practise to have a professional carry out your tests.

Do you need to PAT test new appliances?

New electrical appliances should be supplied in a safe condition and therefore not require formal testing and inspection.  It is however sensible to do a visible check of the appliance to ensure it’s free from any damage that may have occurred in manufacture, transit or delivery to your property.

For more information on PAT testing for your electrical appliances please visit

Holiday Home Insurance – Fire Precautions and PAT Testing Q and A’s


Dear Sir or Madam, My house is insured with you as a holiday let for up to 8 people, with 2 bedrooms upstairs and 2 down. I have had a fire risk assessment completed which was favourable and I’m hoping to implement the recommendations on the report. We have a number of portable electrical appliances, most of which are new as we replace them regularly. The inspector commented that they appear to be in good condition. Do you require me to get each of these appliances P.A.T. tested yearly as a condition of my policy, even though they are regularly renewed, or would it be sufficient for me to check them every few months? Would this also apply to larger electrical items such as the washing machine? One of the recommendations included installing fire doors and frames on each of the bedrooms. Would the insurance consider this to be a reasonable precaution on a house holiday let? Thank you very much for your assistance.Yours faithfully,

Ms L.F.

Reply by Boshers Holiday Home Insurance Team

Dear Ms F,

Thank you for your email, copy enclosed. I can confirm that annual P.A.T. testing of electrical appliances is not a condition of the policy, nor is it at the time of writing a legislative requirement that electrical appliances in individual rented holiday lets are tested. However there is a requirement that the appliances provided as part of the holiday let agreement are safe. It would be prudent for visual inspections of your appliances to be made regularly and ideally on each turnover day that new guests arrive. This could be carried out by yourself or your cleaner/caretaker. As for P.A.T. testing you may feel that this is unnecessary if you replace your appliances on a regular basis (every one to two years). Indeed our office is opposite Woolworths who are advertising Irons for £3.97 as I write this email! You should refer to your Letting Agents Terms as they may require you to have your appliances P.A.T. tested and in any event it would seem prudent to have them tested by a qualified person if you choose not to replace them regularly. Click the link belew for more information: Landlords And Portable Appliances

With respect to your Fire Risk Assessment I would personally feel, that in general, installing fire doors and frames on the bedrooms of a two story holiday let property would be admiral but beyond what the current legislation requires. Afterall a Holiday Home is just that, a Home from Home! So long as you have fulfilled all the legislative requirements this will satisfy your holiday home insurers “Ecclesiastical”. Beyond that a common sense test is; are you comfortable that your holiday Home is safe for you and your family to use? I would refer you to The Visit Britain Accomodation Know How Pink Booklet is a useful source of further reading: Fire Risk Assessment

Kind regards

Boshers Holiday Home Insurance Team