Who is responsible for repairs?
As part of your tenancy agreement, there are certain repairs we carry out to your home; there are others you are responsible for.
As part of your tenancy agreement, we carry out certain repairs to your home. This includes:
- the structure and exterior of the property
- roof, chimney stack and chimney pots
- walls, ceilings, floors and foundations
- gutters, soffits and fascias, pipes and drains
- door and window frame furniture
- fences, gates and boundary walls
- paths and steps giving access to the property
- sanitary installations such as baths, washbasins, sinks, WCs and soil pipes
- service installations, such as water pipes and taps (including stop taps), gas piping from the meter, electric supply from the consumer unit including sockets and switches
- water heaters, fireplaces, fitted fires and central heating
We don't carry out repairs to fences or gates unless the fence borders public land
As a tenant you’re responsible for minor repairs and replacements*
You're also responsible for damage that you, your family, visitors, or pets have caused. This includes repairs caused by accidental damage, misuse or neglect, poor DIY and alterations made without permission.
We’ll charge you for any damages and subsequent repair work caused in these circumstances. These are called rechargeable repairs.
If a potentially chargeable repair is posing a health or safety risk then we’ll come and make the area safe. You’ll need to make your own arrangements to properly fix the damage.
Minor repairs, maintenance and replacements you’re responsible for:
- damage caused by you, your family or visitors to your home.
- lock changes.
- decorating the inside of your home and keeping it in a good state of decoration.
- woodwork and plaster.
- providing and maintaining TV aerials (except shared services)
- your own electrical appliances
- garden fences and gates - except those connected to public land.
- garden sheds and greenhouses
- repairing and replacing small items such as keys, washing lines, WC seats and shower curtains (except those in shared areas such as Sheltered Schemes)
- electric showers – except those installed by the Council or those not designated as tenant’s responsibility when they took on the tenancy
*we may use our discretion in circumstances where a tenant has a vulnerability
The inside decoration of your property is your responsibility. You don't need permission to decorate your home, or carry out minor improvements such as putting up shelving.
If your décor is damaged through no fault of your own (e.g. because of fire, flood, storm or through work being carried out by us) we’ll give you a decoration voucher to help with the cost of redecorating.
Repairs or replacements that are not caused by ‘fair wear and tear’ are your responsibility. You can either carry out the work yourself or pay someone to do it for you. If you want us to carry out a repair you’re responsible for, then please contact the repairs team with the details. We’ll treat it as a rechargeable repair.
Paying for rechargeable repairs
We’ll tell you if you need to pay for your repair once you’ve reported it. You can then decide if you want to go ahead. If you do, you can pay online or by another agreed method.
If you’re unable to pay in full with a single payment, we may agree affordable repayments, based on the completion of an Income Expenditure form and where we believe it’s reasonable to do so.
As your landlord, we‘ve insured the cost of repairing the building. However, you’re responsible for insuring your own household contents. Stroud District Council has arranged a special household contents scheme in conjunction with Thistle Tenant Risks, which you may wish to take advantage of.
Please note, we won't pay for your belongings including damage which may be caused through problems with the building such as burst water pipes or leaking roofs.
See your repairs charges online
You can sign up for an SDC Tenants Online account and see your repairs charges, rent and any other housing payments online at any time.
We are not responsible for any repair or replacement needed as a result of damage or neglect caused by you, your family, your visitors or your pets. This includes accidental damage and any alterations you have made. Damage to our property may be deemed a serious breach of tenancy.
If we have to gain entry and /or secure your property we will charge you for the full cost of the work.
Where any works, that are your responsibility are not undertaken within a reasonable time, the Council reserves the right to organise the work and recharge you.
What if the damage is not my fault?
If a repair is needed as a result of criminal activity that has not been caused by you, a member of your family or a visitor to your home, you will not be charged for the cost of any works providing written confirmation with a crime reference number is obtained from the Police (an Incident Number is not sufficient).
Usually rechargeable repairs result from, and can, include:
- deliberate damage, neglect or inappropriate use of fixtures and fittings
- unauthorised or unsafe DIY work (for example, removing or making safe electrical or gas appliances or making safe structural alterations)
- changing locks and providing new keys (where lost or not handed back at end of tenancy)
- unblocking toilets, sinks, basins or baths where the blockage has been caused by disposal of inappropriate waste
- clearing rubbish from an empty property or garden when you move
- cleaning any empty property when you move out of your home
- removing sheds or outhouses erected without permission
We are responsible for repairs to communal areas as outlined below
- Corridors, stairways, deck access, communal windows
- Entrances, including communal doors and door entry systems and lifts
- Bin areas
- Communal TV aerials supplied by the Council and communal lighting
- Open and landscaped areas
- Common rooms and other shared facilities including laundries and drying areas
Please report any faults in the communal area to the repairs team.
The inside decoration of your property is your responsibility. You don't need permission to decorate your home, or carry out minor improvements such as tiling or putting up shelving.
If your décor is damaged through no fault of your own (for example, because of fire, flood or storm or other work being carried out by us) we will either redecorate the affected area or give you a decoration voucher.
We don't insure your furniture, belongs and decorations against theft, fire, vandalism or burst pipes and leaks.
We strongly advise you to take out household contents insurance.
You can obtain home contents insurance easily and at a price that is affordable with a special scheme arranged in conjunction with Thistle Tenant Risks. This means that Stroud District Council tenants can protect their belongings and gain peace of mind knowing that if the unexpected does happen, they have cover.
Where we know about any asbestos in your home we will ensure that any asbestos-containing material is maintained in a safe condition.
Never try to remove any asbestos-containing material yourself. If it’s been left in your home it will be in good condition. It will be covered or out of reach, so removal won't be necessary
We've carried out a programme of surveys to identify where we have asbestos in our properties. All the findings from these surveys are recorded on our Asbestos Register. If you'd like to ask about your home this information can be made available by contacting our Assets data team on 01453 754536. We've also got a leaflet, ‘The facts about asbestos’, which addresses some common concerns and questions you may have about this material.
If we do not carry out repairs as agreed you can, in certain circumstances, ask us to get another contractor instead. If the second contractor does not do the repair in time, we will pay you compensation. This is called 'Right to Repair'.
Only certain types of repairs are covered under the right to repair scheme. These are called qualifying repairs. They include insecure windows and doors, unsafe power sockets or electrical fittings, leaking roofs and broken entry phone systems.
A full list of the qualifying repairs is set out here
A repair won't qualify for the scheme if:
- it exceeds an estimated cost of £250, or
- we aren't responsible for the repair
- if you're not at home to let the contractor in as arranged
If you report a qualifying repair we will inspect it to check that it qualifies. If it doesn't, we will write to you and tell you.
If it does qualify, we will issue a repair notice to a contractor and send you a copy with information on how the right to repair scheme works. There will be a time limit (depending on the type of repair as set out by law) for the contractor to do the work.
If the repair work isn't done within the specified time limit, you need to tell us and we will ask for another contractor to do the work. If another contractor is available, we will issue a repair notice to them and send you a copy. We can only use contractors on our list.
If the second contractor doesn't do the repair work within the time limit, you'll get £10 in compensation. For every extra day you wait, you'll get another £2. The most compensation you can get for any one job is £50.
If you have any rent arrears, we can use the compensation to reduce the arrears rather than paying you the money.
When you end your tenancy, carry out an exchange or accept a transfer we will inspect your property inside and out to make sure there's no damage (except fair wear and tear). After the inspection, we'll let you know if any work you're responsible for before moving out.
If you've given notice to quit, and don't carry out the work you're responsible for, we'll carry out the work and re-charge you.
If an inspection takes place without you being present or if anything gets damaged after the inspection, we'll take a photos as a record and the work required will be regarded as your responsibility.
If you are carrying out a mutual exchange or transfer and defects aren't put right within a reasonable period, the exchange/transfer will not go ahead. We may also carry out repairs ourselves and charge you for the work.
You need to tell us at the time of the exchange/transfer about any fixtures and fittings, particularly gas appliances that you've bought or adopted from the previous tenant of your new home.
We won't accept responsibility for any alterations or damage caused by the previous tenant; this will be the responsibility of the new tenant. Any health and safety repairs caused by the previous tenant will be put right and a charge made.
In the case of a mutual exchange, we'll assume that both parties have inspected the properties and accept their condition at the time of the exchange. We won't carry out any repairs on the property for the first twelve months following the exchange.
|Baths||✓||Except unblocking wastes (potential recharge)|
|Chains and plugs||✓||On basins, baths and sinks|
|Condensation and damp||✓||Advice on how to manage condensation|
|Decoration (internal)||✓||Except when damage is caused by a structural defect. You must get prior permission from your NMO if you wish to lay laminate flooring.|
|Domestic appliances||✓||Such as cookers, fridges, washing machines, dishwashers|
Internal and external including frames, hinges, door jambs
You will be recharged if your keys to the main entrance doors are lost or you require a lock change because you have given someone your keys. You can take out insurance to cover this.
|Drains||✓||Unless it is a shared drain in which case you must contact Severn Trent on 0800 783 4444|
|Drains||✓||Unless blocked by leaves, sanitary products, wipes or fats (potential recharge)|
|External timbers elements||✓|
|Floor covering||✓||Including adapting doors to accommodate carpets|
|Front door lock||✓||Except communal locks|
|Fences and gates||✓||Except if it backs onto public footpath or highway|
|Fire grates and surrounds||✓||If you have an open fire you are responsible for getting in swept by a certified chimney sweep and sending the certificate to your Neighbourhood Management Officer|
|Fixtures and fittings||✓||Such as coat hooks, curtains, curtain rails|
|Gardening maintenance||✓||Including dustbins and refuse areas|
|Glazing||✓||Except following criminal damage and you must get a crime number
from the police
|Hand basins||✓||Except unblocking wastes (potential recharge)|
|Heating||✓||Any type of heating|
|Hot water heaters||✓||Including cylinder jackets|
|Internal door locks||✓|
|Kitchens||✓||Except domestic appliances|
|Lights||✓||Except dimmer switched and florescent light bulbs|
|Loss of keys||✓||Including repairs to forced entry if you get locked out|
|Mould||✓||Advice on treating mould|
|Out buildings||✓||Brick or concrete. In the case of outbuildings such as WCs, we will not carry out a repair - we will remove it.|
|Paths||✓||Including steps, footpaths and ramps|
|Pests||✓||e.g. By ants, wasps, bees, cockroaches, mice, rats or bedbugs. See Pest control|
|Plumbing repairs and leaks||✓||Except for washing machines and dishwashers|
|Re-lighting pilot lights||✓||Including the resetting of any heating controls or programmers|
|Sink units||✓||Except unblocking wastes (potential recharge)|
|Switches and sockets||✓||Except dimmer switches|
|TV aerials and sockets||✓||Unless communal|
|Washing lines||✓||Unless communal area|
|Windows||✓||Including window sills, catches, sash cords and frames|