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Chargeable Repair Policy Consultation
Firstly, we would like to thank everyone who took part in this consultation – more than 20% of tenants, that’s one in five, took the time to give their feedback. That is a record for any Policy consultation.
Of the tenants who took part:
- 72% agreed that we should charge the tenant for the cost for a repair call where the appointment had been arranged with the tenant, but when the operative arrived at the property, they were not given access to carry out the repair.
- 81% agreed that we should charge the tenant for the costs where we have had to force entry into a property.
What was particularly of interest were the comments given by tenants who had not agreed. Many of these included examples where it would not be appropriate to charge a tenant, for example:
"In our experience it is us that is out of pocket due to taking time off work to keep appointments that are rescheduled or cancelled at the last minute."
"I would say yes in most circumstances where the tenant has wasted the repair contractor's time. However, there may be exceptional circumstances where the tenant has had a medical emergency, and therefore wasn't there at the agreed time. I would assume that these or other extenuating circumstances would be taken into consideration."
“Unless an emergency has occurred e.g. tenant unexpectedly admitted to hospital or an immediate family problem e.g. accident”
“For those of us that have been diagnosed with a Mental Health Condition remembering appointments and allowing strangers access to our safe space can be problematic.”
“What if operative clearly has a cold and client is immune compromised?”
We have taken your comments on board and have amended the draft policy to remove that we will charge for no access visits for responsive repairs, and will only charge in the following circumstances:
- Abortive emergency call outs
- Wasted time or abuse of the service
- No access where an appointment has been made for complex work or for installations such as heating, bathroom or kitchen replacements
- Forced entries
We will keep an eye on repair appointments where access has then not been given, and explore why this has happened over the next year. If we decide to make more changes to the policy because of this, we will consult with you about any significant proposed changes first.
We have added to the policy to state that the Asset Manager has discretion to waive a charge where the tenant has not been able to cancel the appointment, or where there are other mitigating circumstances. This would be dealt with as part of an appeals process to make sure that we are treating everyone fairly
Changes to the Chargeable Repair Policy will be submitted to our Management Committee on 23 March 2023 for approval.