So, here’s our first installment of a guest blog by one of our awesome team……and where better to start than with Jenifer; one third of the magnificent Umega maintenance team. Over to you Jenifer…..
My name is Jenifer and my role at Umega Lettings is Maintenance Electrician. The kind of work I do varies each day and you never know what will be thrown at you from one day to the next; I love the variety of work that comes from working at a letting agent.
A big chunk of my work includes the safety certificates we need to carry out to make sure our properties are safe for tenants to use. I therefore spend a lot of my time carrying out;
- EICR (electrical installation condition reports) – to check the general condition of properties and noting anything that needs corrected to ensure the use of electricity within the premises is safe
- PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) – this is done by using a machine which you plug appliances into to check the safety of that appliance (ie toasters, kettles, lamps), including a visual check of the appliance itself for any damage
- Smoke Alarm Installation – To keep properties up to date with the current regulations we require to install the correct smoke and heat alarms for the required areas of the property
- Emergency Lighting Periodic Inspecting and Testing Report & Smoke Alarm maintenance Check Sheet – HMO properties where there are more than 2 unrelated people sharing, require these documents every year to ensure these items are still operating correcting and are still in date (smoke alarms)
- Gas Safety Checks – I am also a qualified gas safe engineer so I carry out safety checks on all gas appliances within some of our properties. This involves checking appliances such as gas boiler, gas fire and gas hob each year
I also look after any general and emergency electrical jobs that are reported to the office. This can include problems around faulty lights, switches or even tripping faults. As I said, I get a huge variety of work due to the nature of our work and I certainly get to know Edinburgh well with the wide range of properties we manage, all over the city.
In the past with a previous employer my job was working for an insurance company so fixing or replacing anything that needed fixed within someone’s home. This job covered a large area between Edinburgh, Borders, Fife, Perth, Dundee and Glasgow so from this I would say I gained good experience driving and I now know our lovely country very well! It’s nice just to focus on Edinburgh with Umega though as all that driving can be tiring!
When I was in high school we had to choose a company to work with for work experience and I chose a local gas and plumbing company in Eskbank. I realised that I enjoyed learning how things can be fixed, meeting new people and the general good feeling you got from helping someone. I managed to get myself an apprenticeship with this company and at the time I was offered to choose between being an Electrician, Plumber or a Gas Engineer. Because of some of the work I had experienced my employer thought being an Electrician first and then going onto studying to be a Gas Engineer would be best for me (This was due to the fact that boilers were changing all the time and becoming more and more electronic, so electrical skills would be an advantage for gas engineers). I studied at Stevenson College in Edinburgh for 3 ½ years to become a 17th Edition Electrician and then a couple years later moved onto study at a training centre in Dunfermline. Going through college as the only girl on the course was hard and at times during my training I considered throwing in the towel, however my tutors helped me realise that I could do it and I passed. It’s lovely now to be working alongside other girls in the Umega team after working with mainly males during my training and in previous jobs.
I am so grateful for the chances I have been given and I’m so happy to do something I enjoy with great people.
Umega Lettings is a Bcorp Accredited Company and have recently launched a Staff Property Fund in order to attract, retain, develop and reward the best people out there. To read more about Jenifer click here or if you’d like to contact Jenifer to chat about anything to do with her role, just contact her here.