Gaining permission for adaptations and improvements
Tenants will need written permission before you start to make any adaptations or improvements to your home.
We usually grant permission except for cases where the alterations:
- will make the home less safe;
- are not approved by the local authority planning or building control offices;
- will reduce the value of the property;
- are excluded by your tenancy agreement;
- do not comply with current standards or legislation.
All work must be done by suitably qualified competent persons. You must also take particular care with structural, gas or electrical work. To seek permission, or for further advice, please contact us.
Adapting your home
Is anyone in your home disabled, elderly or suffering from a severe illness? You can have adaptations made to make living there easier. We will consider requests for adaptations from all residents who rent. Shared owners and leaseholders should apply to their local authority for assistance.
All adaptations carried out by us meet Lifetime Homes Standards. This means they have features which make them easy to live in for everyone, old or young. These include:
- Convenient car parking spaces.
- A sheltered front entrance with outside light.
- Wide front door and hall.
- Accessible windows, locks and catches.
- Adequate turning space for wheelchairs in all rooms.
- Hand rails on stairs.
- Switches, sockets and service controls at a height usable by all.
Major adaptation work
For work that will cost more than £1,500, you will be referred to your local authority. They have Occupational Therapists who can give you specialist advice on how the application process works. They can also help you find out what you are entitled to.
Some examples of major adaptations are:
- provision for wheelchair access;
- entry phones, intercom systems and doorbell lights;
- widening doors and windows, easy-to-use door handles and window openers;
- lifts, hoists and stair-lifts;
- a level-access shower (no step).
Minor adaptation work
We have an annual budget for work for rented residents that will cost less than £1,500.
Some examples of minor adaptations are:
- a shower over the bath;
- grab rails at the front or rear entrance;
- additional handrails for staircases;
- widening of paths around the property;
- paving areas for wheelchairs.
Please contact us for further information and advice on how to apply.
Decorating your home
You are responsible for decorating the inside of your home. We will give you financial support if the property is below our decorating standard when you move in. Also if decoration has been damaged by our repair work. We will provide you with financial support to bring the décor back up to standard.
We expect you to discuss any concerns about the condition of the home before you sign your tenancy agreement.
Aerials, satellite dishes and cable television
Residents must have our written permission before installing any aerial, satellite dishes, or ducts or cables for cable TV.
You may also need planning consent if your home is listed or is within a conservation area. There are also specific rules about satellite dishes on blocks of flats. If planning permission is granted, please let us know when the aerial or dish has been set up. We will inspect it to make sure it has been fitted properly.
We will usually grant you permission, but only where we are sure that it:
- will not interfere with other people;
- will not damage the property;
- will be installed properly;
- has been approved by the planning authority if required. Please send us a copy of this along with your application form.
You will be responsible for the costs of fitting and looking after any aerials and dishes you have installed. We may require you to take them down when you leave the property.
Please contact us to apply for permission.
When you move out
When you move out, you must leave your home as you found it. Unless we give written permission to do otherwise. We will make this clear to you when we grant you permission to make any alterations or improvements.
If you wish to take any fittings you have added, you must replace the original ones. Unless we have agreed in writing, you must repair any damage caused by the fittings.
Compensation for improvements
If you end your tenancy, you may be entitled to claim compensation for improvements you have made. You are only entitled to compensation if the improvements cost over £500 but no more than £3,000.
We will only pay compensation if:
- we approved the improvements;
- your tenancy has ended;
- you have followed our procedures;
- the alterations improved the value of the property.