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-   -   Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana (https://britishexpats.com/forum/spain-75/getting-utility-meters-connected-chiclana-275576/)

cindyp Jan 5th 2005 8:42 pm

Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 
Hello, new member here!

Can anybody help please?

We have just (November) bought a lovely townhouse on an established urbanisation, La Loma, in Novo Sancti Petri. The urbanisation has been established for about 3 years but the house we bought, although completed, was never lived in by the previous owner. When it was sold to us, we asked about water and electricity and were assured that it would be no problem, everything would be on by or soon after completion. Everyone made the assumption that it was just a matter of flicking a switch or just switching account owners with Endessa. But there never were any accounts set up and when we got there and looked at the meter boxes there was none for our house - no water, no electric. :scared: :mad:


I have read in the usual spanish property books that everyone reads, that the developer (I think it is UDINSA in our case) is responsible for connection of utilities and there should be no charge. However, the house was bought from the developer 3 years ago so although they probably had that obligation to the original owner and he never took it up, do they have the obligation to connect utilities for us? Anybody had any experience of dealing with UDINSA or got any contact details please?

I have also read that you have to go to the town hall and utilities offices and stand in various queues but the vendor appears not to have provided whatever paperwork we need and it is proving difficult to get hold of it. He says he has sent it to our lawyer but the lawyer has not yet received it. We don't speak spanish (am learning it as fast as I can) and can't ring Endessa and I don't even know the name of the water company. Our lawyer is dealing, but it's all very slowwwww.....

Does anyone know any ways around all this? Or what the procedure should be and how long it will take? Or any way of making it shorter? What do the locals do when faced with this situation, which I'm assuming probably happens pretty often, particularly as a few other houses on our urbanisation dont appear to be lived in and judging by the gaps in the meter box, don't seem to have meters either. Do they just do without water and electricity for several months or do we need some inside knowledge? Or is it something that a handy plumber or electrician can 'fix' for us in the meantime?

Also on the electricity front our lawyer said that there are apparently now new regulations in spain which mean the the fuse boxes (ours is pretty modern with circuit breakers) now have to conform to new regulations introduced at the end of 2004 and we probably have to have a new fuse box installed too, even though it's only a few years old. Can anyone shed any light on that one?

Luckily for us we don't live there yet but we did spend a week there in November whilst we had to get the place furnished etc and it was pretty grim. I'm wondering whether I should get a gestor on the case but again, anyone got a recommendation for a good one who speaks english? Is this something a gestor would deal with or should I leave it with our lawyer?

Also would love to hear from anyone who has also bought property in that area - just to find out a bit more really, particularly anyone else who has bought at La Loma - cos we still haven't got any details about the communidad and if anyone can give us any info about them that would be good too.

We love the area and are so looking forward to spending time there. We also need to rent it out though and an electricity and water supply would be really good!
.. been reading the threads about Costa Esuri - very interesting....

Ta Cindyp

jdr Jan 8th 2005 3:41 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by cindyp
Hello, new member here!

Can anybody help please?

We have just (November) bought a lovely townhouse on an established urbanisation, La Loma, in Novo Sancti Petri. The urbanisation has been established for about 3 years but the house we bought, although completed, was never lived in by the previous owner. When it was sold to us, we asked about water and electricity and were assured that it would be no problem, everything would be on by or soon after completion. Everyone made the assumption that it was just a matter of flicking a switch or just switching account owners with Endessa. But there never were any accounts set up and when we got there and looked at the meter boxes there was none for our house - no water, no electric. :scared: :mad:


I have read in the usual spanish property books that everyone reads, that the developer (I think it is UDINSA in our case) is responsible for connection of utilities and there should be no charge. However, the house was bought from the developer 3 years ago so although they probably had that obligation to the original owner and he never took it up, do they have the obligation to connect utilities for us? Anybody had any experience of dealing with UDINSA or got any contact details please?

I have also read that you have to go to the town hall and utilities offices and stand in various queues but the vendor appears not to have provided whatever paperwork we need and it is proving difficult to get hold of it. He says he has sent it to our lawyer but the lawyer has not yet received it. We don't speak spanish (am learning it as fast as I can) and can't ring Endessa and I don't even know the name of the water company. Our lawyer is dealing, but it's all very slowwwww.....

Does anyone know any ways around all this? Or what the procedure should be and how long it will take? Or any way of making it shorter? What do the locals do when faced with this situation, which I'm assuming probably happens pretty often, particularly as a few other houses on our urbanisation dont appear to be lived in and judging by the gaps in the meter box, don't seem to have meters either. Do they just do without water and electricity for several months or do we need some inside knowledge? Or is it something that a handy plumber or electrician can 'fix' for us in the meantime?

Also on the electricity front our lawyer said that there are apparently now new regulations in spain which mean the the fuse boxes (ours is pretty modern with circuit breakers) now have to conform to new regulations introduced at the end of 2004 and we probably have to have a new fuse box installed too, even though it's only a few years old. Can anyone shed any light on that one?

Luckily for us we don't live there yet but we did spend a week there in November whilst we had to get the place furnished etc and it was pretty grim. I'm wondering whether I should get a gestor on the case but again, anyone got a recommendation for a good one who speaks english? Is this something a gestor would deal with or should I leave it with our lawyer?

Also would love to hear from anyone who has also bought property in that area - just to find out a bit more really, particularly anyone else who has bought at La Loma - cos we still haven't got any details about the communidad and if anyone can give us any info about them that would be good too.

We love the area and are so looking forward to spending time there. We also need to rent it out though and an electricity and water supply would be really good!
.. been reading the threads about Costa Esuri - very interesting....

Ta Cindyp

Seems like slack work by the lawyer.

Whos lawyer is he ?

Who assured you about " it would be no problem, everything would be on by or soon after completion "

You should of made sure it was on before and paid for by the seller before completion.

" when we got there and looked at the meter boxes there was none for our house - no water, no electric " I might be wrong but I think you need these for a habitation licence.

Good luck, but you have heard of manaña, have you ?

Nige Jan 8th 2005 5:51 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 
Sounds like normal 'running in' difficulties. It can be daunting when these things occur and even when you are in the property, you may need the help of some 'trades person'. As far as the electrics are concerned, it sounds as if you need a local electrician who is licensed to carry out work by Endessa. This would be a question of talking to locals and finding out who can help. Obviously if you can get all the work done by your vendor that would be great, but it seems that this may be too late. Or is it? Can your lawyer not pursue this IF it was made a condition of the sale that you would have electricity and water.
Alternatively, and I would probably do this first, establish exactly who the Presidente of the Communidad is and make contact. It's possible that they could be of help. Presumably in your purchase 'escritura' you should have the copy of the 'community agent's release' or at least something to confirm that you don't get lumbered for back charges for community charges. The transfer documents should clearly show who is running the community.
If the town house was bought as an investment by the previous owner, it is quite possible that it was only used in July/August or never at all ! In the hot summer months when you party till dawn and eat out you may not want too much power !
I can't help with local electricians but I have a tel. number of a british 'handyman' who lives in Chiclana and who is basically a painter decorator. 'Brush Strokes' Tel. 617846592 / 677705142

I stay in El Puerto sometimes which is a few miles from Chiclana and know a few very useful souls in that town. But sounds like you need to have a local network !

Chiclanagir Jan 8th 2005 5:56 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 
Hi Cindy

Re electricity problem, can't really help as we have been in our house for 7 months in Pago de Humo and we still haven't got an electric meter. Ours is still on the builder's electricity and is "supposed" to be being moved over, but, I will believe it when it happens. I have heard that if you go yourselves to the electricity company you could get a whooping fine, so I would leave it to your solicitor to sort out, yes they are slow. We don't have to worry about water as we have our own well, but, if we get our electricity cut off, we lose everything including our water. The trouble is when you live here you tend to get the "manana" attitude too. What part of the country are you from? What is your complex like, we stayed down near to the beach in the summer whilst waiting for our chalet to be finished and felt it was too busy for us so we opted for a "rural setting".


Originally Posted by cindyp
Hello, new member here!

Can anybody help please?

We have just (November) bought a lovely townhouse on an established urbanisation, La Loma, in Novo Sancti Petri. The urbanisation has been established for about 3 years but the house we bought, although completed, was never lived in by the previous owner. When it was sold to us, we asked about water and electricity and were assured that it would be no problem, everything would be on by or soon after completion. Everyone made the assumption that it was just a matter of flicking a switch or just switching account owners with Endessa. But there never were any accounts set up and when we got there and looked at the meter boxes there was none for our house - no water, no electric. :scared: :mad:

I have read in the usual spanish property books that everyone reads, that the developer (I think it is UDINSA in our case) is responsible for connection of utilities and there should be no charge. However, the house was bought from the developer 3 years ago so although they probably had that obligation to the original owner and he never took it up, do they have the obligation to connect utilities for us? Anybody had any experience of dealing with UDINSA or got any contact details please?

I have also read that you have to go to the town hall and utilities offices and stand in various queues but the vendor appears not to have provided whatever paperwork we need and it is proving difficult to get hold of it. He says he has sent it to our lawyer but the lawyer has not yet received it. We don't speak spanish (am learning it as fast as I can) and can't ring Endessa and I don't even know the name of the water company. Our lawyer is dealing, but it's all very slowwwww.....

Does anyone know any ways around all this? Or what the procedure should be and how long it will take? Or any way of making it shorter? What do the locals do when faced with this situation, which I'm assuming probably happens pretty often, particularly as a few other houses on our urbanisation dont appear to be lived in and judging by the gaps in the meter box, don't seem to have meters either. Do they just do without water and electricity for several months or do we need some inside knowledge? Or is it something that a handy plumber or electrician can 'fix' for us in the meantime?

Also on the electricity front our lawyer said that there are apparently now new regulations in spain which mean the the fuse boxes (ours is pretty modern with circuit breakers) now have to conform to new regulations introduced at the end of 2004 and we probably have to have a new fuse box installed too, even though it's only a few years old. Can anyone shed any light on that one?

Luckily for us we don't live there yet but we did spend a week there in November whilst we had to get the place furnished etc and it was pretty grim. I'm wondering whether I should get a gestor on the case but again, anyone got a recommendation for a good one who speaks english? Is this something a gestor would deal with or should I leave it with our lawyer?

Also would love to hear from anyone who has also bought property in that area - just to find out a bit more really, particularly anyone else who has bought at La Loma - cos we still haven't got any details about the communidad and if anyone can give us any info about them that would be good too.

We love the area and are so looking forward to spending time there. We also need to rent it out though and an electricity and water supply would be really good!
.. been reading the threads about Costa Esuri - very interesting....

Ta Cindyp


cindyp Jan 10th 2005 4:55 am

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by glynis
Hi Cindy

Re electricity problem, can't really help as we have been in our house for 7 months in Pago de Humo and we still haven't got an electric meter. Ours is still on the builder's electricity and is "supposed" to be being moved over, but, I will believe it when it happens. I have heard that if you go yourselves to the electricity company you could get a whooping fine, so I would leave it to your solicitor to sort out, yes they are slow. We don't have to worry about water as we have our own well, but, if we get our electricity cut off, we lose everything including our water. The trouble is when you live here you tend to get the "manana" attitude too. What part of the country are you from? What is your complex like, we stayed down near to the beach in the summer whilst waiting for our chalet to be finished and felt it was too busy for us so we opted for a "rural setting".


Thanks to Jdr, Glynis and Nige for the replies.

At the moment (luckily) we still live in the UK. Bought the house to get a foothold as we knew prices would shoot up beyond our reach if we didn't do it now. We hope to move to the area in about 4 or 5 years time when the kids have finished school. But this means we have two mortgages so the spanish house needs to be rented out for holiday lets. We did get an electrician who put in a connection as a favour - but whether this is 'builder's electric' or not, I don't know. There is still no meter - just a fuse and I'm worried that if the electricity company come to read the other meters, they will see that ours doesn't have a meter and cut it off.

I've assumed that we would have a proper supply by the summer at the very latest - and it's really worrying to think we might not.

To answer Nige's comments, it wasn't stated as a condition of sale that the house had electric and water - I think the estate agent and lawyer assumed it was already connected because the vendor indicated that it was. He promised the estate agent he would give all the water and electricity documentation to us when we completed but has not done so and the lawyer didn't get it and is now asking for it. Vendor says he's sent it but it hasn't arrived... We also asked (and expected to get as a matter of course), the details of the communidad but these haven't appeared either, the vendor apparently says he has no details. But he should have if he was paying the charges. I was thinking about this today and the horrible thought did occur to me whether there are fees outstanding for back charges... He never used the house at all - when we bought it, it had just wires hanging out of the ceilings - there have never been any lights connected.

It was a condition in the private contract that the house was sold free of all debt and charges but if there are charges then it is probably a case of us suing the vendor... expensive, time consuming etc. And likewise with all the paperwork he was supposed to hand over - if he says he's sent it and it doesn't arrive how can we dispute that it ever existed? :mad:

We are coming to Chiclana at the end of January and if we don't have answers or electricity and water by then I' guess I'll have to go to Endessa and queue up and try and sort it out. At the moment we have left it with the lawyer as we feel it was his mistake. He is probaby the best person to deal with it but it's probably not his top priority. Unless anyone knows the name of a good gestor who speaks English?

The thing is, it is all ready to go, the pipes are there, the connections are there, it's just the meters and the paperwork that are missing. We know it has had water connected, even just to test the supply, because there was water in the toilets and some in the pipes. It probably would be possible to connect it and bypass the non existent meter for now, but we are worried about the repercussions of doing this. We need the water but what happens if the water company read the meters and see that ours is connected with no meter??? And how long would it be for?? We still don't even know who the water company is but as my spanish is still limited to the very basic stuff I couldn't ring them anyway. But if anyone knows who the water company is for Chiclana I'd be grateful for a name and I'll have to ask one of my spanish friends who lives in Gibraltar if they can make a phone call for me and find out what we can do.

thanks all for the tips and for the handyman number - I'm very grateful. Part of the problem is that we are trying to deal with this from long distance.

It's just sooo frustrating and worrying too. But thanks very much for your responses which have been really helpful. :(

Chiclanagir Jan 10th 2005 7:59 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by cindyp
Thanks to Jdr, Glynis and Nige for the replies.

At the moment (luckily) we still live in the UK. Bought the house to get a foothold as we knew prices would shoot up beyond our reach if we didn't do it now. We hope to move to the area in about 4 or 5 years time when the kids have finished school. But this means we have two mortgages so the spanish house needs to be rented out for holiday lets. We did get an electrician who put in a connection as a favour - but whether this is 'builder's electric' or not, I don't know. There is still no meter - just a fuse and I'm worried that if the electricity company come to read the other meters, they will see that ours doesn't have a meter and cut it off.

I've assumed that we would have a proper supply by the summer at the very latest - and it's really worrying to think we might not.

To answer Nige's comments, it wasn't stated as a condition of sale that the house had electric and water - I think the estate agent and lawyer assumed it was already connected because the vendor indicated that it was. He promised the estate agent he would give all the water and electricity documentation to us when we completed but has not done so and the lawyer didn't get it and is now asking for it. Vendor says he's sent it but it hasn't arrived... We also asked (and expected to get as a matter of course), the details of the communidad but these haven't appeared either, the vendor apparently says he has no details. But he should have if he was paying the charges. I was thinking about this today and the horrible thought did occur to me whether there are fees outstanding for back charges... He never used the house at all - when we bought it, it had just wires hanging out of the ceilings - there have never been any lights connected.

It was a condition in the private contract that the house was sold free of all debt and charges but if there are charges then it is probably a case of us suing the vendor... expensive, time consuming etc. And likewise with all the paperwork he was supposed to hand over - if he says he's sent it and it doesn't arrive how can we dispute that it ever existed? :mad:

We are coming to Chiclana at the end of January and if we don't have answers or electricity and water by then I' guess I'll have to go to Endessa and queue up and try and sort it out. At the moment we have left it with the lawyer as we feel it was his mistake. He is probaby the best person to deal with it but it's probably not his top priority. Unless anyone knows the name of a good gestor who speaks English?

The thing is, it is all ready to go, the pipes are there, the connections are there, it's just the meters and the paperwork that are missing. We know it has had water connected, even just to test the supply, because there was water in the toilets and some in the pipes. It probably would be possible to connect it and bypass the non existent meter for now, but we are worried about the repercussions of doing this. We need the water but what happens if the water company read the meters and see that ours is connected with no meter??? And how long would it be for?? We still don't even know who the water company is but as my spanish is still limited to the very basic stuff I couldn't ring them anyway. But if anyone knows who the water company is for Chiclana I'd be grateful for a name and I'll have to ask one of my spanish friends who lives in Gibraltar if they can make a phone call for me and find out what we can do.

thanks all for the tips and for the handyman number - I'm very grateful. Part of the problem is that we are trying to deal with this from long distance.

It's just sooo frustrating and worrying too. But thanks very much for your responses which have been really helpful. :(

There is an English electrician in Chiclana called Steve Harris, if you want his number I will get it for you.

cindyp Jan 11th 2005 8:16 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by glynis
There is an English electrician in Chiclana called Steve Harris, if you want his number I will get it for you.

Thanks glynis - funny enough I picked up steve Harris' card when we were last in Chiclana. I'll keep it to one side in case we need him. It's a small world isn't it.

We were hoping to get out to the house later in January but can't do it now because of this - it's very frustrating.

However the lawyer says that there is a package awaiting collection at Chiclana post office from the vendor which we are all hoping contains the missing paperwork that we need. So we may have a bit of light at the end of the tunnel.

By the way, you were wanting a map of the Conil beachtop area weren't you for your walks (sorry, I'm answering another thread here....). I found a streetmap of Roche on www.elnovo.com. if you are coming out of Novo Sancti Petri and go through Roche and take the direction that says towards Conil off that map then (if I remember right) it should take you onto the small coast road that runs along towards Conil, where you want to walk your puppy. There are a few car parking areas in places where there is access to the beach. If you drive along that road towards Conil you will come to the lighthouse at Cabo Roche and more nice walks. The website has also got some interesting aeriel photos of different urbanisations in the area (fairly old ones I think) and useful phone numbers.

Chiclanagir Jan 14th 2005 6:08 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by glynis
There is an English electrician in Chiclana called Steve Harris, if you want his number I will get it for you.

Talked to my husband about this and he believes you haven't got water because with no electricity the pump wouldn't work!!! have also got a telephone number of a very good Spanish electrician if you should need it.

Will look at the web site you recommended.

Lovely day today had lunch in old Sancti Petri in the sunshine. Yesterday was 26o, slightly cooler today.

Nige Jan 14th 2005 6:13 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by glynis
Yesterday was 26o, slightly cooler today.

26 :cool: that's nearly 80 degrees ! It's middle of January. :scared: scary

cindyp Jan 14th 2005 6:34 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by glynis
Talked to my husband about this and he believes you haven't got water because with no electricity the pump wouldn't work!!! have also got a telephone number of a very good Spanish electrician if you should need it.

Will look at the web site you recommended.

Lovely day today had lunch in old Sancti Petri in the sunshine. Yesterday was 26o, slightly cooler today.

I don't think we need a pump cos mains water is connected to the urbanisation - all the other houses are connected and they don't have pumps - we investigated the meter area fairly thoroughly because we were trying to work out why we didn't have water and everyone else did. (we know they are connected because we pinched water from their outside taps in November). It's just the connection via the meter that's missing. But we are getting somewhere at last with it all because the right papers have arrived and we've been told that with the right papers connection can be done pretty shortly. But I'm not going to believe it til I see it.

26 degrees eh. Well it's pretty chilly in London, I can tell you. Went jogging last night and my ears were frozen. Can't wait til my kids have finished school and we can move permanently. :)

jdr Jan 14th 2005 8:25 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by cindyp
I don't think we need a pump cos mains water is connected to the urbanisation - all the other houses are connected and they don't have pumps - we investigated the meter area fairly thoroughly because we were trying to work out why we didn't have water and everyone else did. (we know they are connected because we pinched water from their outside taps in November). It's just the connection via the meter that's missing. But we are getting somewhere at last with it all because the right papers have arrived and we've been told that with the right papers connection can be done pretty shortly. But I'm not going to believe it til I see it.

26 degrees eh. Well it's pretty chilly in London, I can tell you. Went jogging last night and my ears were frozen. Can't wait til my kids have finished school and we can move permanently. :)

We have schools in Spain as well ;) ;)

dazzle Jan 14th 2005 9:27 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 
can anyone say how long it takes on average to get electricity switched from builders electricity? We've been waiting 5 months now and I was beginning to think there was something wrong, but listening to Glynis, maybe not.

cindyp Jan 14th 2005 9:28 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by jdr
We have schools in Spain as well ;) ;)

Yeah but sonny Jim is 16 and just doing mock o levels and really happy at his current school. I don't want to force him to move right now - we did talk about it and he's keen to finish school here - I think he's at too crucial a stage to uproot him now. I am lucky enough to have a 16 year old son that actually cares about the school he currently goes to enough to have an opinion on it. I don't think there are many english schools in Chiclana, and unfortunately him finishing with school clashes with girlie ( currently 13) then starting her mocks and same reasons will then apply. I could force the issue but life is tough enough with Kevin the Teenager and Vicky Pollard. (you will only get this if you get Little Britain in spain!)

Never mind, we can come back and forth to spain, learn the language in the meantime with Michel Thomas and other cds and me and hubby can come and live here once the oiks are bigger. Although we would like to move now, I do try and take my kids point of view on board too, being 16 is difficult enough as it is... so I'd rather he enjoyed the bits of spain he has with us as 'holiday spain' and as we can wait a while, we will. When he's 18 or 19 he can decide whether he moves with us or not... we won't feel any obligation after that time, he will have the choice and it's up to him if he takes it.

dazzle Jan 14th 2005 9:30 pm

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 
Well said cindyp!

jdr Jan 15th 2005 8:53 am

Re: Getting utility meters connected in Chiclana
 

Originally Posted by cindyp
Yeah but sonny Jim is 16 and just doing mock o levels and really happy at his current school. I don't want to force him to move right now - we did talk about it and he's keen to finish school here - I think he's at too crucial a stage to uproot him now. I am lucky enough to have a 16 year old son that actually cares about the school he currently goes to enough to have an opinion on it. I don't think there are many english schools in Chiclana, and unfortunately him finishing with school clashes with girlie ( currently 13) then starting her mocks and same reasons will then apply. I could force the issue but life is tough enough with Kevin the Teenager and Vicky Pollard. (you will only get this if you get Little Britain in spain!)

Never mind, we can come back and forth to spain, learn the language in the meantime with Michel Thomas and other cds and me and hubby can come and live here once the oiks are bigger. Although we would like to move now, I do try and take my kids point of view on board too, being 16 is difficult enough as it is... so I'd rather he enjoyed the bits of spain he has with us as 'holiday spain' and as we can wait a while, we will. When he's 18 or 19 he can decide whether he moves with us or not... we won't feel any obligation after that time, he will have the choice and it's up to him if he takes it.

Like you say if its that close and he`s enjoying school then its best to hang on. :cool:


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