British Gas HomeCare: is it worth it?

British Gas offers a number of ‘HomeCare‘ maintenance packages. What these mean is that you pay a monthly fee for unlimited engineer call-outs. The extent of the technologies this covers depends on your individual package. Some cover just your boiler, and more expensive packages cover central heating, plumbing, drains and electrics too. The idea is that you are covered in the case of an emergency call-out, and you’ll only pay once, regardless of how many times you need an engineer over the course of a year.

How much does British Gas HomeCare cost?

While monthly fees are fairly low, they starts to rack up over the course of a year.

The cheapest package starts at £12 per month. 12 x £12 = £124 per year, for annual boiler service and boiler and controls.

The most expensive package starts at £20.50 per month. £20.50 x 12 =£246, for the above plus drains, wiring, plumbing repairs and central heating repairs.

Is British Gas HomeCare worth it for me?

If you have had a new boiler installed fairly recently, HomeCare’s probably not worth it, because you’re (fingers crossed) unlikely to have major problems that need expensive call-outs. Also, most good boilers come with a 5-6 year warranty. This means the manufacturer has a duty to repair or replace your boiler if it malfunctions during this time – and there is probably no point paying British Gas on top of this to do the same!

If you have an old boiler, the cheapest package might be worth it – but British Gas would first have to approve to do a survey and check your boiler to check they are happy to cover you. There are stories about British Gas engineers quoting hundreds of pounds in order to get boilers up to this ‘minimum standard’ before allowing you to sign up – which is a pretty big rip-off. If you’re finding yourself spending a lot on call-out fees and maintenance, it’s probably going to be better in the long run to invest in a new boiler instead…

Are there any problems with British Gas HomeCare?

Yes! As mentioned before, we have heard of several cases when people have been quoted hundreds of pounds worth of improvement works in order to qualify for cover in the first place. We have also heard of people being told after signing up that their systems were not eligible!

There are also tales of British Gas engineers taking a very long time to come out when needed. If you don’t get put on a priority list for paying for HomeCare, it’s hard to see what the benefit is!

If you decide youwould feel more comfortable being part of one of these schemes, (rather than paying for repairs as and when they are needed), there are loads of similar ones around – normally for a much lower monthly fee. So it’s probably worth shopping around!

Do you have experience with British Gas HomeCare? Leave us a comment below! 

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