If you rent your property, your landlord has a responsibility to keep it well maintained and safe.
You can look at GOV.UK for information about renting privately, including what you are responsible for and what your landlord is responsible for.
You can also look at Shelter for advice about housing.
If your landlord does not complete repairs they are responsible for, or if you think your property is unsafe, you can report it to us.
If you own your home and are unhappy with its condition, you can apply for a loan.
Report a repair or unsafe property
Before you report a repair or unsafe property to us, you need to contact your landlord or letting agent. We can't accept your report unless you have told your landlord or letting agent and given them time to make the property safe.
We do not deal with complaints about poor decoration or furnishings. You may be referred back to your landlord if a matter concerns minor repairs only.
Many complaints don't require formal investigation.
You can look at Shelter for letter templates to send to your landlord.
If your landlord does not carry out the repair or make your property safe after you have contacted them, you can report it to us.
To report a repair or unsafe property, you will need to tell us:
- your name, address and contact details
- your landlord's name, address and contact details
- what the problem is
- if anyone else lives with you, and whether they are related to you or part of your family
- your age and the ages of the other people living with you
- whether you or other people living with you have a serious illness or disability
we will also ask you to provide:
- copies of letters, emails or texts that you have sent your landlord or your agent and the date you send them
- details of any response from your landlord or letting agent
- photographs that show what the problem is and where it is located in the property
What happens after we receive your report
We prioritise all requests we receive based on the information that is provided.
If we do not have enough information or you have not informed the landlord about your complaint, the complaint may be closed.
We will determine if the conditions appear likely to cause imminent harm, in which case a visit will be arranged. In all other cases, we will write to your landlord, tell them about your concerns and ask them to confirm in writing what they are doing about the problem and when they will complete the work by.
If we receive a timetable from the landlord, we will let you know. We will not intervene unless the works are not completed as agreed.
Assess your report and decide what action to take
If an inspection is required, we assess the hazard and give it a category using the housing health and safety rating system (HHSRS). The category we give the hazard depends on how likely it is to cause harm and how serious the outcome would be.
Once we have given the hazard a category, we will decide what action to take. A category 1 hazard poses the most risk, so we will take enforcement action to reduce it. A category 2 hazard poses a lower risk than category 1, and we will usually make recommendations of how to reduce the risk.
Acknowledge your report
We will assess your enquiry within 10 working days. We will contact you if we need additional information.
Contact your landlord
Once we have assessed your report, we will write to your landlord and tell them of your concerns. We will ask them to confirm in writing their proposals and timescales for action.
We will give your landlord up to 12 weeks to investigate and response with their proposals.
If your landlord does not take remedial action, we will need to inspect your property to device if we need to take enforcement action. Enforcement action could involve :
- serving a hazard awareness notice
- serving a prohibition order
- making a prohibition order
- taking emergency remedial action
You must co-operate with your landlord to undertake repairs or improvements to the property to reduce a hazard. We can't enforce a notice if the tenant does not allow access to complete the necessary work.
Notices or orders may be suspended if the property is empty or the occupiers are not in a risk group for the particular hazard.