As a landlord we have the responsibility for maintaining the structure and fabric of your home. However you may, at some time want to make some improvements to your home that are not covered under our repairing responsibilities, or replace something in your home that we are not due to replace for several years. In this case you may want to carry out the work yourself. Your tenancy agreement gives you the legal right to make improvements like this, as long as you get written agreement first.
We would need you to complete and submit an application form. This will help us to give you guidance and support to ensure these improvements are carried out correctly and safe within the law.
Depending on the alteration you want to make, a surveyor will visit to have a look at what you'd like to do and ask any questions we may have.
We will not usually refuse to give you permission to carry out alterations or improvements.
When we give permission we may set certain conditions, which you must keep to when you carry out the work. If you start work without our permission, you may have to put the property back into its original condition. If you do not, we may do the work and you will have to pay for this.
If you are concerned you may have already completed an alteration that needed permission please get in touch so we can check this for you.
We cannot unreasonably refuse to allow you to carry out improvements to your home, but we will not usually allow improvements where:
- The work would reduce the value of your home;
- The work would make the property less safe;
- The work would void a manufacturer’s warranty;
- The work would cause a nuisance to your neighbours;
- The work would result in additional costs to the council;
- You can not demonstrate the work will be carried out by suitably competent and qualified person/contractors and/or there may be a breach of health and safety legislation;
- You are removing amenities within the property that we have provided to make the property suitable for occupants with specific medical needs i.e. removal of a level access shower to fit a bath;
- The works are of a structural nature i.e. removal of walls or erection of a conservatory;
- Shared access rights to amenities, services or equipment will be compromised.
- Any room is to be divided to create an additional room.
We may also set some guidelines that you must comply with and it is your responsibility to check with the Council's Planning Department or Building Control to see if you need Planning Permission or Building Regulations Approval.
Any improvements you carry out to your home will not lead us to increase your rent.
Please use the form below if you wish to carry out improvements, or call us on 01543 462621 for a form or any other query.
Please send us the application form at least 28 days before you plan to start work.
We may wish to visit you to inspect your proposals to check that there will not be any issues or problems arising from them before we give permission.
You must not start work until you have received written permission, and confirmed your agreement of the conditions under which the works can be carried out. Examples of the type of conditions you will be asked to stick to are set out below:
Information to install a Shower
Information to renew Fencing or Gate
Information to install a Shed
Information to install a Satellite Dish & Aerial
Information to install a Driveway or a Dropped Kerb
Information to renew or alter Kitchen
Information to install a Conservatory
Information to renew Windows or Doors
Information to renew or alter Bathroom orToilet
Information to install CCTV security camera or a camera door bell
When the work is finished
You must tell us as soon as the work is finished. We'll visit within 20 working days to check that everything is OK. If it isn't, we will ask you to put the work right or to restore the property to how it was before.
Who repairs and maintains your improvements?
It's up to you to maintain any improvement that you put in except gas central heating, your new gas central heating system will be added to the councils service and maintenance programme once it has been inspected by our contractor to ensure it has been installed correctly. Once we are satisfied it has been installed correctly your boiler will be serviced annually and the system will be maintained in line with our maintenance specification. You will have to leave the boiler and system behind if you leave the property.
What happens to the improvement if you leave?
If you leave your home and you have replaced a fixture or fitting belonging to the Council e.g. kitchen units you must leave them behind or you will be charged for the replacement cost. You may be able to take your improvement with you -a conservatory for example but you must 'make good' after you've removed the improvement, by filling holes and repainting for instance. If you didn't do this we would charge you for putting it right (See Rechargeable Repairs contained in the Housing Services Repairs Handbook below). If in doubt please contact us.
If you leave the improvement behind when you move you may be eligible for compensation.
If you end your tenancy soon after you have carried out an improvement, you may be entitled to compensation. We will only pay compensation on a limited number of improvements. You will only receive the compensation if you have followed the guidelines set out; these are in addition to our general guidelines. More details on compensation for improvements are contained in your Housing Services Repairs Handbook below.
Last Updated: 02/11/2021