With all the horror stories of what goes wrong when an apartment catches fire, you would never want to skimp on safety.
But what if you were paying over the odds for safety inspections that were followed by upgrades that you didn’t really need but were recommended by the same people who did the inspection? Oh, and the inspection was compulsory.
A year ago this column exposed the scandal of “embedded networks” – where an infrastructure supplier would do a deal with the developer of a new building to install their equipment for free, provided the developer agreed to "dupe" the buyers of their apartments into signing up for an extended and inflated maintenance contract.
Recently we were told about another way of extracting money from apartment owners, that also may not always be entirely honest.
This potential scam comes under the general heading of “essential services”, which is big business if the number of companies that have those two words in their title is anything to go by.