Edinburgh student claims she’s had ‘no hot water’ in £176 a week room

She’s asking for rent compensation from Unite Students

An Edinburgh student has been left intermittently without hot water whilst still paying £176 a week in rent.

The student, Yiqing Sun, lives on a Unite Students site on Chalmers Street and is asking for compensation from Unite. 

She told Edinburgh Live: “It started last December, and the water just goes cold in all the blocks. We have tried and emailed the maintenance team but nothing has got better.

 “On 19 January, the receptionist told us they needed a new part for the boiler, which would arrive in a couple of days, but because nothing changed and they didn’t give us any updates.

“We emailed again and last week the sales manager said the water is fine. So, I tested the water and sent the results in emails. A receptionist then got back to say the new part would arrive this week, on Wednesday, and could be fixed by Friday.”

A Unite representative respondent apologised and said that the issue was “incredibly unfortunate,” and they assured the student that their team was carrying out regular water temperature checks to ensure that it never dropped below the legal requirement.

Unite Students also claimed several repairs have been made since the end of December.

Yiqing has been doing her own temperature checks. She said: “Most of the time the water is around 27 degrees and the highest we’ve got it to in the last three months was around 36 degrees.” 

She went on to say: “I understand there is a pandemic but they don’t give us updates on the situation.” 

Yiqing did not go home for Christmas and is demanding 20 per cent of her rent be reimbursed as compensation for not receiving hot water, which she says is “essential to our living experiences.”

A spokesperson for Unite Students told Edinburgh Live: “We are aware of an intermittent issue with the supply of hot water at this property and we would like to apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.

“While there is sufficient hot water available for all tenants, there has been a reduced supply at peak times following the breakdown of one of the building’s two boilers.

“Our priority has been focused on communicating regularly with students affected by this issue. We anticipate the broken boiler will be fixed this week.”

A spokesperson for Edinburgh University said: “We are sorry to hear that this student has experienced issues with her accommodation.”

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