If you are a tenant and you are concerned about a repair needed on your home, you should tell your landlord or your repairs team first. Make a note of the date you reported the issue to them.
Your landlord should respond in a timely way to fix the issue. You may have to be flexible in the amount of time you have to wait currently as shortages in the workforce and the ongoing impact of coronavirus is making it difficult to get hold of tradespeople quickly.
If after waiting a reasonable amount of time your repair issue has still not been fixed then you should report it to our property standards team and we will investigate.
Property complaint procedure
When you contact the team a Property Standards Officer will visit your property after telling the landlord of the complaint. It may not always be possible to tell the landlord, for example if the issue is an emergency.
During this visit, your property will be inspected and assessed using the Housing, Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS). The risk assessments are based on the likelihood of an incident causing harm and the severity. The result of the assessment will help us decide what to do next. Read housing, health and safety rating system guidance on GOV.UK
If our assessment has identified there is an issue that needs to be dealt with, then we will first of all try to deal with it by working with your landlord, owner or leaseholder.
If this fails, then we will take formal action. This includes:
- A Hazard Awareness Notice
- Improvement Notice
- Prohibition Notice
- Emergency Remedial Action
- Demolition Order
- Designate a Clearance Area
Please note there will be a charge of £175 for serving formal enforcement notices. Our Property Standards Officer will tell you more about the process and charges if the situation gets to this point.
Civil penalty notice
We can impose civil penalty notices as an alternative to prosecution (introduced by the schedule 9 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016, section 126 which came into force on 6 April 2017).
The offences that civil penalties can be considered for are:
- Failure to comply with an improvement notice (Housing Act 2004, section 30)
- Licensing of HMO’s under Housing Act 2004 Part 2 (Housing Act 2004, section 72)
- Licensing of houses under Housing Act 2004 Part 3 (Housing Act 2004, section 95)
- Failure to comply with overcrowding notice (Housing Act 2004, section 139 (7)
- Management regulations in respect of HMO’s (Housing Act 2004, section 234)
- Breach of a banning order (Housing and Planning Act 2016, section 21)
As set out in legislation we are required to publicise our process and our charging policy which is used to calculate the level of the penalty fine. Please read the Civil Penalty Notice Policy.
Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Private sector landlords are required by law to have at least one smoke alarm installed on every storey of their property. They should also install a carbon monoxide alarm in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance (e.g. a coal fire or wood burning stove).
Your landlord should also make sure checks are made to ensure that each alarm is in proper working order on the day a tenancy begins if it is a new tenancy.
Your landlord can be fined up to £5,000 for not complying with this regulation.
If you have a concern about the number of smoke alarms installed in your property then please contact the team.
Read smoke and carbon monoxide alarm guidance for landlords and tenants on the Government’s website.
Bonfires, noise and odours
Advice on what to do about bonfires, noise and odours can be found on the Worcestershire Regulatory Services website.
More advice regarding repair issues in rented housing is available from Citizens Advice.