Standards you can expect during your tenancy

Content owner : Last updated : 05/03/11

Paying your rent and how we will deal with arrears

We will:

  • Offer you a variety of ways to pay your rent, including direct debit.
  • Refund any money owed to you on your rent account within 10 working days.
  • Try to prevent you getting into serious arrears by sending reminders at an early stage and by officers speaking to you or visiting you at home before any legal action is taken.
  • Negotiate affordable repayment agreements with you if you owe money to Kirklees Council.
  • Give you information on where to get debt advice, and within five working days of your asking for one, make an appointment for you to see one of our debt counsellors. If you prefer, we can put you in touch with an independent debt advisor, for example the Citizens Advice Bureaux.
  • Evict tenants who deliberately do not pay their rent where all other attempts to sort out the problem have failed.
  • Make sure that if we take any legal action that affects your rights as a secure tenant we do this according to your tenancy agreement.
  • Record and start to investigate any breaches of tenancy conditions, including nuisance, within five working days and keep you informed of progress and action taken.
  • investigate immediately any incident of harassment which includes violent or potentially violent attacks.

Looking after your home

We will:

  • Offer you a range of ways to report your repair.
  • Offer you a morning or afternoon appointment for inspecting and measuring routine repairs.
  • Offer you a morning or afternoon appointment for doing routine repairs.
  • Offer you a morning or afternoon appointment for doing certain other types of repair.
  • Send you a receipt to confirm that your repair has been reported.
  • Keep in touch with Building Services and others to make sure that wherever possible, all repair appointments are kept.
  • Check with you that you are happy with the quality of the work and that it has been finished within the agreed time limits.
  • Provide an estate caretaking service within five working days to carry out small jobs around your home, for example fitting window locks and spy holes, unblocking sinks, easing internal doors.
  • Provide an 'out of hours' emergency repairs service.
  • Reply within five working days if you ask for permission to alter or improve your home, and it is a straightforward alteration. Where we need to carry out more enquiries, for example if you ask to install a water meter or convert an attic space, we will finish our investigations and answer you within six weeks.
  • Consult you about modernising or improving your home by having a face-to-face interview, sending you a letter or inviting you to a meeting with our officers.

Looking after your estate

We will:

  • Make sure that shared land, staircases, paths, garages, play areas and other areas on your estate are, as far as possible, clean, tidy and free from litter, rubbish, and dumped furniture.
  • Carry out estate inspections with local tenants' representatives and local councillors at least four times a year on all our estates. If we find that work needs doing to meet agreed standards, we will agree an improvement plan and timetable with the tenants' representatives within 10 working days.
  • Remove offensive graffiti within 24 hours.

Finding out what you think

Our arrangements for consulting our tenants will be appropriate to the issue being covered and who is to be involved.

For example, this may be:

  • Consultation with individual tenants.
  • Through the local tenants' and residents' association or area forum.
  • Through Kirklees Federation of Tenants' and Residents' Associations.

We will:

  • Use a range of methods to make sure you can get involved in improving services, at a level to suit you. This will include opportunities to take part in local groups and to tell us what you think through the estate manifesto.
  • Make sure you know about opportunities for getting involved in service delivery (for example, to agree the priority for the Estate Caretaking Service), as publicised in the Tenants Charter. We will check that you are satisfied with the consultation arrangements through surveys and feedback.
  • Provide a report to tenants' representatives every six months to show how our performance compares to the standards within the charter.
  • Carry out regular surveys to test your satisfaction of the services we deliver and use this information to continually improve our services to you.