Accessing Council Services:
- You can access advice, or support with using our online services, by phoning 01268 882200 (8.45am to 5.15pm Mon to Thurs, and to 4.45pm on Fri)
- The Kiln Road office will re-open for pre-booked appointments only (9.00am to 4.00pm), these can be arranged on a case by case basis by phoning 01268 882200.
- You can find information and advice on COVID-19 and our 24/7 online services on our Coronavirus information page .
Improvements and Adaptations
Who is responsible for decorating my home?
We will externally paint your home and any associated communal areas as part of our planned maintenance programme. It is anticipated that external painting will take place at least once every 5 years.
Under the terms of the Tenancy Agreement, you are responsible for the internal decoration of your home. If you were awarded a redecoration allowance when you first moved into your property, you must claim that allowance within six months of the start date of your tenancy.
What should I do if I am elderly or disabled and require aids and adaptations to my home?
If you feel you need aids and adaptations works carried out to your home, you should firstly contact Social Care Direct on 0345 603 7630 (or 0845 603 7630 - calls cost 5p per minute).
We may be able to help if you require aids and adaptations, for example grab rails, access ramps, stair lifts or a level access shower, we maybe able to provide assistance in installing these, but will require an occupational therapy referral.
Can I make improvements to my home?
Yes, you have a legal right to make improvements to your home but you must seek our written permission first.
Examples of improvements include:-
- Changing kitchen units or kitchen layout.
- Changing bathroom suites.
- Installing a shower.
- Installing patio doors.
We will normally give you permission to make improvements provided that:-
- It is carried out by a qualified and experienced person to a professional standard.
- You do not cause nuisance and annoyance to neighbours.
- You do not make the property unsafe.
- You agree to accept all costs of future repair, maintenance and servicing.
- You do not damage or reduce the value of the property.
After the completion of all improvements, we will carry out an inspection.
You may have a legal right to receive compensation for certain improvements when you leave the property, provided you asked for permission to do those works and received written confirmation from the Council. You should also have submitted all plans and estimates / costs to the Applications and Tenancy Services Section prior to the works being carried out. When you vacate the property, you must ensure that you leave fixtures and fittings in the property. i.e. if you have replaced a kitchen and wish to take that with you, you must replace the units.
Who to contact
If you want to make any alterations or improvements to your home or require further information on compensation for improvements undertaken, you can do so by:-
- By writing to the Housing Services Manager, Housing & Communities Department, Council Offices, Kiln Road, Benfleet, Essex SS7 1TF.
- By telephoning: 01268 88 2326
- By making enquiries via an Occupational Therapist