Standards of service you can expect from KNH

Content owner : Last updated : 05/03/11

The standards you can expect

KNH is the company that provides management services for Kirklees council tenants. This section tells you the main standards of service you can expect for housing management, and also for services provided by the council, including building services, highways, leisure and environmental waste.

The service standards have been written and agreed with tenant representatives. We have also consulted staff about them. They reflect what our customers have told us are the most important issues and have been approved by the management board of KNH.

We want to give you a quality service that meets your needs and is continually improving. By telling you what level of service you can expect you will know when we don't meet this standard. If this happens, we want you to tell us about it so that we can put things right and learn from our mistakes. This will help us to improve the service further.

Compliments and complaints

Make a complaint, comment or compliment

Step 1

If you are unhappy, your first point of contact should be the neighbourhood service centre that dealt with you. The staff there will have the information needed and may be able to put things right straight away. If not, ask to speak to the relevant manager or senior manager for the neighbourhood. We aim to give you our initial response within 6 working days. If we need more time to investigate, we will explain why, and contact you again within 15 working days. If we cannot reply fully within these times, we will tell you the reasons why, and when you can expect a response from us.

Step 2

If you are unhappy with the manager's response, you can ask our Customer Service Manager to review your issue. The Customer Service Manager will only deal with problems that have originally been considered by a locally based manager. The Customer Service Manager will investigate and reply to you within 15 working days.

Step 3

If you are still unhappy, you can ask that your complaint is reviewed by KNH's Customer Service Panel. The Customer Service Panel will only look at complaints that have already gone through stages 1 and 2 of the KNH complaints procedure.

If you are still not satisfied after we have fully investigated your complaint then you can contact the Local Government Ombudsman:

If you are a leaseholder you can contact the Leaseholder Valuation Tribunal (LVT):

Serving a Notice of Concern

This is a formal step if things continue to go wrong. Tenants' and residents' associations can serve a notice on the council at a local housing management committee meeting. A Notice of Concern can cover any of the standards of service set out in the Quality Guarantee. We will try to put things right within four weeks of receiving the notice. We will report our progress to the next meeting of the housing management committee.

Serving a Performance Improvement Notice

If the housing management committee is still not satisfied that we have put things right, a Performance Improvement Notice can be served. We will then investigate what has gone wrong, and put together an improvement plan and timetable for putting things right. We will keep checking our performance, and continue to report on progress to the housing management committee, until members of the committee are satisfied that the standard has been fully met.

To find out more, please ask at your neighbourhood housing office for information on how this process works. It is important that we know if our customers are unhappy with our service. If we do get things wrong, don't accept it - tell us about it as soon as you can.

When you contact us

You can expect staff to:

  • treat you fairly, courteously and sensitively, regardless of your age, gender, disability, race, religion or sexuality.
  • answer your telephone call promptly, tell you the name of the office and who you are speaking to, and if visiting you, show you official identification.
  • Listen to you, take responsibility for trying to help you and keep you informed. For example, we will call you back if we have said we will do so.
  • Communicate with you by providing information in a way that you can understand, and arranging for an interpreter if you need one.
  • Offer you a single point of contact. If your enquiry is about council services such as leisure or highways, we will contact the correct department for you and tell you what they say.
  • Record and pass on your details so you only have to explain the problem once.
  • Offer you an appointment, if needed, to see your housing officer at your home or somewhere else locally. The appointment will be within five working days of your enquiry to us.
  • Offer you a private interview, if appropriate.
  • Offer you an appointment with a more senior officer within 10 working days if the officer you have already dealt with is unable to help you, or you are unhappy with their reply.
  • Reply to your enquiries within six working days. If we need more time to investigate, we will explain this to you and aim to reply in full within 15 working days
  • Work in partnership with you, your representatives and others to continually improve the service we deliver.

Becoming a tenant

We will:

  • Give you information on 'Applying to be on the Kirklees Housing Register' and check on our computer system for available homes. We will normally discuss this with you in person.
  • Register your application for a tenancy within one working day, acknowledge your application within five working days and keep you informed of progress on your application.
  • Arrange for an assessment of any complex needs you have, within 30 working days of your application being registered or your details being changed. This would include needs such as disability or ill health.

Your new home

We will:

Give you a copy of the New Tenancy Pack, which sets out your rights and responsibilities, and lets you know what you can expect from us.

Have cleaned your home to the following standard:

  • all surfaces and fittings will be left in a clean and hygienic condition and clear of mould;
  • all floors will be swept or cleaned;
  • walls and ceilings will be washed down where needed, and any graffiti and loose wallpaper removed;
  • woodwork will be cleaned with detergent where needed;
  • windows will be washed on the inside on all floors, and outside on the ground floor where needed;
  • baths, sinks and toilets will be cleaned and disinfected;
  • gardens will be tidied and cut, paths swept and outbuildings cleared;
  • a wheeled bin or dustbin will be provided.

Make sure your home:

  • is wind and watertight, secure and free from structural problems;
  • is safe to access, with doors and windows that open and lock;
  • is free from rising or penetrating damp;
  • is properly supplied with hot and cold water;
  • has a working electric or gas cooking point and stainless steel sink unit;
  • has enough food storage space, including a double base unit and double wall unit in the kitchen if there is enough room;
  • has an easily cleanable waterproof work surface;
  • has a suitably located toilet, fixed bath or shower, and wash basin;
  • has a smoke alarm in full working order on every floor.

Check to make sure:

  • any asbestos materials are not in a dangerous condition;
  • the electrical and gas supplies are in a safe condition;
  • the main space and water heating systems are in full working order.

Improvements made to your home by the previous tenant will be left in good condition, and safe.

If there is no gas or electric meter, we will record this on the inspection sheet. We will tell the electricity or gas companies that there isn't a meter.

If some minor repairs can be done after you move in, without causing any risk to your health and safety.

we will give you a written 28-day repair guarantee saying:

  • what needs to be done;
  • when the work will be done;
  • who to contact if there is a problem.

We will contact you within 15 days of your moving into your new home, to check you are happy with your tenancy.