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We’re inviting all customers to take part in the Places for People Group financial inclusion survey. Financial inclusion is all about ensuring customers are aware and can access advice and services to help live sustainably in their home. The survey is designed to measure how we currently provide financial inclusion activity across the various businesses in the group and what we could do better in the future.

Any updates we make as a result of feedback will be available online and in our magazine Derwent Life. To take part in the survey, please follow this link. 

Published

Repairs and maintenance

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Published , updated

How Derwent Living manages its repairs and maintenance service. 

Apart from homes where the resident owns or part-owns the property themselves, Derwent Living is responsible for most (but not all) repairs in its residents’ homes. 

Our commitment

As a landlord we are responsible for keeping properties in good repair. We also maintain the shared parts of our housing schemes, such as corridors, lifts and landscaped areas. All of this work is paid for by rent and service charges. 

Our service will: 

  • provide a cost-effective repairs and maintenance service to homes and communal areas that responds to the needs of, and offers choices to, tenants, and has the objective of completing repairs and improvements right first time
  • meet all applicable statutory requirements that provide for the health and safety of the occupants in their homes
  • ensure a prudent, planned approach to repairs and maintenance of homes and communal areas. This should demonstrate an appropriate balance of planned and responsive repairs, and value for money. The approach should include: responsive and cyclical repairs, planned and capital work, work on empty properties, and adaptations
  • co-operate with relevant organisations to provide an adaptations service that meets tenants’ needs.

Please report repairs promptly and arrange an appointment for us to inspect your property and complete any work.

We set targets for completing repairs depending on the type of repair and will advise you of this and schedule an appointment when you get in touch.

To log repairs 24/7 365 days a year please use our online form.

Repair responsibility

Some repairs are not the responsibility of Derwent Living. If you are responsible for a repair you should make arrangements to have work carried out by a suitably qualified person. This article in Derwent Life magazine gives further advice on repair responsibilities.

Gas safety

For rented properties, it is our legal responsibility to ensure that your home is safe by providing you with an annual gas safety certificate.

We will carry out an annual gas service and make an appointment for you by letter when it is due.

In order for us to comply with the law on gas safety, if, after notice, you do not provide reasonable access to your property we can take legal action in order to carry out the service. This is to ensure that you and your family are safe. You could be recharged for this and could incur other penalties from a court.

Please avoid this by working with us to find a suitable time to carry out these essential works. You can read more about gas safety on our dedicated page.

Upkeep of your home, garden and communal areas

As a tenant you must keep your home in good condition and maintain your garden if you have one. Please do not leave items in communal areas that are a fire risk or a trip hazard to others. Dispose of household waste responsibly.

Gardens

It is your responsibility to ensure that your garden is tidy and free of rubbish at all times. It is also your responsibility to carry out any repairs and maintenance work required to anything that is in your garden including trees and shrubs.

In exceptional circumstances where there is a threat to health safety or the security of the premises or where you are deemed to be vulnerable we may agree to carry out the repair and then charge you for the cost of doing so. In all circumstances we will ensure that when you are given a home these items reach our lettable standard.

This means that they will be in a condition that makes them maintainable by you from the start of your tenancy. 

Fencing

Where there is a boundary fence or wall in between you and your neighbours home it is your responsibility to repair and maintain this fence.

It is your responsibility to maintain fences or gates between your home and a path that only you and your neighbours have for entry to your back gardens.

Where there is a fence between your home and a public space for example a car park we will repair and maintain this fence.

If a gate only gives access to your home then it is your responsibility to repair and maintain this gate.

Garages and out buildings

Any sheds or other out buildings separate to your home are your responsibility to repair and maintain. We will repair the doors to all garages to make them safe and accessible.

Other repairs including roofing we will only do where it is an integral garage or a garage adjoining a house.

Chargeable costs

You are responsible for damage to your property, garden or communal areas. If you fail to keep them clean and tidy, we may charge you for any work required to resolve the situation. We will give you the opportunity to remedy the situation first.

Access for repairs and inspection

Your tenancy agreement requires you to provide your landlord with access to your property for repairs and inspection with reasonable notice (we will let you know a time and date when we require access).

If you repeatedly fail to provide access we may apply to a court to gain access and you could incur other penalties imposed by the court. If an appointment is not convenient and we will rearrange it.

If there is a risk to the safety of residents or of serious damage to our property, we may be forced to gain entry to your property in an emergency and will take all reasonable precautions to protect your rights and your property.

Improving your property

Customers with assured and secured tenancies have the contractual right to improve their homes.  However, tenants should not make any improvements, alterations or additions to their home without first getting permission in writing. 

Tenants who signed on to a starter tenancy, fixed-term or assured short-hold tenancy are not entitled to make any alterations or improvements to their property until they receive confirmation that their tenancy has been converted to full assured status.