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Repair responsibilities

Both you and West Kent have a responsibility to maintain your home and to carry out repairs.

If you are a shared owner or leaseholder you can find out more here.

  • Your responsibilities

    You are responsible for day-to-day repairs in your home and keeping your home and garden in a clean and tidy condition. If you or anyone visiting your home has caused a repair, either deliberately or accidentally, and we come out and fix it, we will charge you.

    • Accidental or malicious damage, by you, your family or visitors in your home or shared areas
    • Adjustment of doors for carpets or other flooring
    • Bleeding radiators
    • Boiler controls – maintaining water pressure in your system
    • Batteries in smoke/heat/carbon monoxide detectors, door bells
    • Bath panels
    • Blockages to sinks, washbasins, baths, toilets – except customers living in flats, where shared drainage is blocked
    • Clothes lines and posts – except communal areas
    • Condensation/mould prevention
    • Damage due to forced entry, including by the emergency services
    • Decorating – internal to individual homes
    • Door numbers and nameplates, door bells, chains, letter plates and boxes
    • Door stops
    • Draught proofing
    • Glazing – accidental breakage and vandalism
    • Home improvements you have made, including extensions
    • Individual appliances that you own i.e. cookers, washing machines
    • Internal doors and handles, hinges and cupboard catches
    • Keys – replacement for damaged, lost or stolen keys and fobs and associated lock changes
    • Light bulbs, fluorescent tubes and starters, except communal lighting
    • Pest control – except communal areas
    • Plaster repairs – minor patching and cracking to walls and ceilings
    • Plugs and chains to sinks, baths and washbasins
    • Resetting the trip switch at the fuse board and carrying out appliance tests if there is a power cut
    • Sheds
    • Shower heads and hoses, shower rails and shower curtains
    • Tap washers
    • Toilet seats and covers including replacement
    • TV aerials and satellites dishes – except communal areas

    You must ensure you have home contents insurance to protect your personal belongings in case of accidental damage

  • Our responsibilities

    We are responsible for ensuring that your property is safe and kept in a good standard of repair. We prioritise our repairs into the categories below:

Repair priorities

We prioritise repairs depending on their severity and their impact on you and your home. When scheduling your appointment we will take into account any vulnerability or medical need that you have told us about. If you need to update us about your circumstances, please contact us.

  • Emergency repairs

    Emergency repairs are those that pose an immediate risk to health and safety or security or could cause substantial damage to the fabric of the building.

    Target response time: Within 24 hours. Outside normal working hours, we will ensure the property is safe and arrange a repair on the next working day.

    These types of repair include:

    • Blocked drain causing waste to surge into basin, bath, sink or WC (health and safety)
    • Blocked flues
    • Blocked toilet (where there is only one in the property)
    • Board up for security
    • Broken down lifts
    • Failure of warden alarms
    • Faults to door entry systems that leave block closed
    • Major water leaks from pipes, tank or cistern - not containable
    • Make safe after flooding, storm or fire
    • Make safe major damage to roof
    • Make safe major structural damage
    • Offensive and racist graffiti
    • Total loss of electrical supply - tenants will be charged for supplier issue
    • Total loss of water supply - tenants will be charged for supplier issue
    • Unsafe power, lighting, electrical fitting.
  • Urgent repairs

    Urgent repairs are where there is a risk to your health or security.

    Target response times: within three calendar days.

    These types of repair include:

    • Door or window security issues
    • Faults to door entry systems that leave block open
    • Loss of gas supply - tenants will be charged if the issue is with the gas supplier
    • Loss of heating or hot water
    • Partial loss of water supply - tenants will be charged if the issue is with the water supplier.
  • Routine repairs

    Routine repairs are all other repairs. We will agree an appointment with you when you report this type of repair. 

    Target response time: within 21 calendar days 

    These types of repair include:

    • Blocked sink, basin, baths or second WC
    • Damage to stair tread or hand rail/banister
    • Defective flooring which is not an immediate health and safety problem
    • Faulty electrical fittings and minor electrical faults
    • Faulty extractor fan
    • Fly tipping and rubbish clearance
    • Faulty communal TV aerial
    • Graffiti
    • Leaking roof, missing roof tiles and faulty or blocked guttering causing serious water penetration 
    • Partial loss of heating
    • Partial loss of hot water
    • Plumbing repairs and day to day replacements
    • Repairing and cleaning of gutters and downpipes
    • Repairs to doors, floors and windows (not internal doors)
    • Repairs to a kitchen
    • Severe dampness.
  • Planned repairs

    These are planned and cyclical repairs and improvements to maintain the standard and value of the property, such as painting, replacing roofs and replacing windows. We use a 'just-in-time' approach for component renewals. This means we’ll only replace a component (such as the kitchen or doors) when we can no longer carry out economical repairs. We don’t carry out replacements based on the age of the component. In this way we can extend the useful life of components to minimise waste. If you’d like a copy of our just in time policy please ask. Remember - you must keep a clear rent account to qualify for replacement of your kitchen, bathroom or doors. 

    Target response time: within 12 months

Appointments

When you report a repair we will give you an appointment time. Our contractor will call with an appointment time slot that suits you. If you cancel the appointment later than 10am on the day we will charge you £20. Likewise, if we cancel later than 10am and cannot complete the repair on the same day we'll pay you £20.

Always ask for proof of identity before letting anyone into your home. This includes staff from West Kent and anyone working on our behalf. If you’re not sure just give us a call.

To report a repair simply log into My West Kent or contact us.  

Read full details of our Maintaining Your Home repairs standard.

Home safety 

Providing safe homes and neighbourhoods is a priority. We regularly safety check all the appliances in your home that we own. This video explains how we help keep you, your family and your neighbours safe:

Please make sure you don't leave any personal items in communal areas, to ensure the fire escape routes are always clear. We'll remove any items we find, and will usually charge a fee to return them.

For information and useful videos on home and fire safety visit Kent Fire and Rescue Service, or speak to one of their home safety advisers on freephone 0800 923 7000.

For information on personal safety and keeping your property safe visit Kent Police 

For advice about keeping safe from carbon monoxide visit the Gas Safe website