Repairs and maintenance

If you live in a house you’re responsible for the inside and structure of your home. If you live in a flat you’re responsible for repairs inside your home but we normally look after the structure of the building and communal areas. You pay for the costs through your service charge.

You may also be responsible for external areas such as gardens, fences, boundary structures, garages and car parks. Please check your lease or legal agreement to see exactly what you are responsible for.

Repairs to brand new homes

If you’ve got a brand new or newly refurbished home, then any building defects are the responsibility of the builder for the first twelve months from the date your home was completed. This is called the defects period. This starts from the date your home was completed, not when you bought the home or moved in. If your defects period has less than three months to go at the point you buy your home, or has expired before you complete your purchase, then we’ll ensure you benefit from at least three months of warranty cover. We’ll always let you know the date that the warranty period ends in the welcome letter you receive when you move in.

Certain non-urgent repairs such as decorative items may not be carried out until the end of the defects period. Keep a list of anything you think needs looking at and we’ll discuss them when we inspect your home at the end of the period. We’ll agree then what needs to be repaired and put these things right in the following weeks.

If your repair is urgent, for example a leaking pipe, the toilet doesn’t flush or the heating system doesn’t work, please let us know straight away. You can log a repair by logging in to your account.

At the end of the defects perios we'll visit you to confirm any outstanding defects, following which the contractor will contact you and arrange a visit to carry out these works. On the completion of these works the contractor will ask you to confirm all is completed.

As a homeowner, at the end of the defects period repairs to your home become your responsibility. Some may be covered by your National House Building Council Certificate (NHBC) or Zurich New Build warranty. Your certificate from us will explain what is covered. If you have any problems please get in touch with NHBC or Zurich. 

Repairs to communal areas

If we’re the freeholder we’ll keep the structure of the building and the common areas, such as halls, stairways, roads, paths and gardens in good repair. We check these areas regularly but if you notice anything that needs repairing please log in to your account to let us know, or call us on 08458 729729.

If we don’t own the freehold the above responsibilities will be carried out by a third party such as a management company or the local authority. Please contact us if you need advice on who is responsible.

Section 20 consultation

There are some things we need to consult you about and you normally have 30 days to let us know what you think. These are called Section 20 consultations.

We’ll write to you to consult you if we:

  • need to charge you more than £250 in a year towards the cost of a service contract or a day-to-day repair.
  • intend to carry out work, explain why we need to do it, and let you know the cost. We may also have to give you the opportunity to put a contractor forward to carry out the work.
  • plan to set up contracts for more than 12 months, where the cost to you is likely to be more than £100 in a year. Depending on the value of the contract, we may also have to advertise in the EU.

This area of legislation can be complicated. If you’d like more information please contact The Leasehold Advisory Service on 020 7374 5380 or take advice from a solicitor.

If you are concerned about the cost of major works, please read our policy on assisting homeowners who are unable to pay large bills for major works or improvements.

Gas safety

It's recommended that you have the gas appliances and pipes in your home checked every year to make sure they're safe and any warranties remain valid.

It's your responsibility to organise these checks. To find out more, have a look at our Gas safety checks and servicing for homeowners leaflet.