LEAD OFFICER. Bruce. Johnson Payable. cover. Compensation. time limits. of LYHA. Policy. Version: 2.0

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1 COMPENSATION POLICY LEAD OFFICER Bruce Johnson Director of Technical Services Board Approval: January 2011 Next Revieww Date: January 2013 CONTENTS 1.0 Introduction 2.0 Purpose 3.0 Right to Repair 4.0 Qualifying Repairs 5.0 Failure to Keep Appointments 6.0 Home Loss and Disturbance 7.0 Right to Compensation 8.0 Compensation not Payable 9.0 Ex-gratiaa Payments 10.0 Review 1.0 INTRODUCTION Theree are circumstances when Leeds & Yorkshiree Housing Association might provide compensation to cover financial loss and/or inconvenience due too a failure in service delivery. It is our policy to t be fair to tenants who have suffered loss or inconvenience, whilst also seeking to avoid excessive compensation payments. It is the policy of Leeds & Yorkshire Housing Association, therefore, to pay p compensation to cover financial loss and/or inconvenience in the following circumstances only: 1. Right to Repair - Failure on the part of LYHA or one of its contractors to carry out a repair within set time limits 2. Loss of use of facilities in the home due too repairs which are thee responsibility of LYHA 3. Failure on the part of LYHA or its contractors to keep a pre-arranged appointment 4. Home Loss and Disturbance payments where a tenant is required to movee from theirr home on a permanent basis. 5. Disturbance payments where tenants t aree required to vacate their home on a temporary basis due to repairs or improvements whichh are the responsibility of LYHA. 6. To cover the cost of certain improvements made by the tenant, on termination of the tenancy by the tenant. These payments are subject to limitations as determined by the Housing Corporation. Tenants must contact Leeds & Yorkshire Housingg Association before entering intoo any agreement or incurring any costs which may, at a later date, form part of a claim for compensatc tion from the association. Compensation Policy Version: 2.0 Page 1

2 The association has the right to request that the tenant obtain up to three quotations for any works related to a compensation claim. If a tenant has any queries regarding compensation claims, they are advised to contact the association. 2.0 PURPOSE The purpose of this policy document is to clearly set down tenant s rights in relationship to Compensation. 3.0 THE RIGHT TO REPAIR The Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 gave secure tenants of local authorities enhanced rights relating to the repair and improvement of their homes. The HCA is keen to promote similar rights for housing association tenants. These rights form part of the tenancy agreement between us, as landlord, and tenants, and apply to both assured and secure tenants. The Right to Repair enables tenants to claim compensation where LYHA has failed in its duty to have a qualifying repair carried out within the specified time, and after a further request from the tenant, we have still failed to complete the works within a second specified period; the tenant may be due to compensation from ourselves. We classify all repairs as emergency, urgent or routine, and inform tenants of the time limits for carrying out the repair at the time the problem is reported. The time limits are: Emergency - 24 hours Urgent - 5 working days Routine - at our discretion, normally within 20 days In some cases we will reconsider response times to take account of tenants who have special needs, such as the elderly, or those with very young children. 4.0 QUALIFYING REPAIRS FOR STATUTORY RIGHT TO REPAIR IN WORKING DAYS Total loss of electric power 1 Partial loss of electric power 3 Unsafe power or lighting socket or electrical fitting 1 Total loss of water supply 1 Partial loss of water supply 3 Total or partial loss of gas supply 1 Blocked flue to open fire or boiler 1 Total or partial loss of space or water heating between 31 October and 1 May 1 Total or partial loss of space or water heating Between 30 April and 1 November 3 Blocked or leaking foul drain, soil stack or toilet pan (when no other working toilet in the house) 1 Toilet not flushing (when no other working WC in the house) 1 Blocked sink, bath or basin 3 Tap which cannot be turned 3 Leaking from water or heating pipe, tank or cistern 7 Insecure external window, door or lock 7 Loose or detached banister or hand rail 3 Rotten timber flooring or stair tread 3 Leaking roof 7 Door entry phone not working 7 Extractor fan in internal kitchen or bathroom not working 7 Compensation Policy Version: 2.0 Page 2

3 For clarification, qualifying repairs included under the emergency or urgent categories are: Emergency: Total loss of electric power Unsafe power or lighting socket or electrical fitting Total loss of water supply Total or partial loss of gas supply Blocked flue to open fire or boiler Total loss of space or water heating between 31 October and 1May Blocked or leaking foul drain, soil stack or toilet pan (when no other working toilet in the house) A blocked toilet (where there is only one toilet in the property) Leaking pipe, tank, cistern or heating Insecure external window, door or lock Urgent: Partial loss of electric supply Partial loss of water supply Partial loss of space or water heating between 30 April and 1 November Blocked sink bath or basin A blocked toilet (where there is more than one toilet in the property) Tap which cannot be turned Loose or detached banister or hand rail Rotten timber flooring or stair tread When you report an emergency or urgent repair we issue a repair notice, which describes the repair and names the contractor (or in-house maintenance worker) who will be doing the work, and by when it should be finished. We ask that you co-operate in providing access to your home. If we fail to carry out the repair within the set timescale you should inform us that the repair has not been done. We will then, where it is reasonably practical, issue a further repair notice and give a copy to you as the tenant. If we fail to undertake the qualifying repair requested, you are entitled to the following compensation: A one off payment of 10 Payment of 2 per day (up to a maximum of 50) for every day the repair remains outstanding after the timescale detailed in the second repair notification has expired. The Right to Repair does not apply if you have failed to provide access for an inspection or for the qualifying repair to be carried out. 5.0 FAILURE TO KEEP APPOINTMENTS If LYHA or one of its contractors fails to keep a pre-arranged appointment, a one-off compensation payment of 10 will be made to the tenant. Where a third party contractor has failed to keep an appointment, LYHA will look to re-claim this payment from the contractor. Where a tenant fails to keep appointments, LYHA will look to re-claim the costs incurred by the association and/or limit the service provided to emergency call-outs only. 6.0 HOME LOSS AND DISTURBANCE There are occasions where a tenant may have to move out of their home, either temporarily or permanently, so that the association can fulfil its obligations to repair and maintain its properties. Compensation Policy Version: 2.0 Page 3

4 In such cases, a tenant may qualify for a Home Loss or Disturbance payment. Full details of what compensation may be due to tenants can be found in the Relocation of Tenants Policy and Procedures. 7.0 THE RIGHT TO COMPENSATION FOR IMPROVEMENTS As tenant, you have the right to claim compensation for improvements you make to your home, subject to our written consent. Detailed below is a list of pre-determined improvements that you can make to your home, although you must first get our written permission, and the costs must be met by yourself. You will need to submit three estimates from bona fide contractors and state the reasons for choosing a particular estimate. Only with our agreement can you instruct the contractor to start work. You will be eligible to claim compensation based on the cost of the improvement less a deduction based on the length of time the improvement has been in place. All improvements have a pre-determined lifespan. Compensation will only be paid when you terminate your tenancy, and that the amount agreed will be set against any sums that may be owed to us. Where the tenancy is terminated through a possession claim based on a breach of obligation under the tenancy agreement, we will not pay compensation. The formula for calculation is based on the cost of the improvement, and the number of years left of its lifespan. For example, a new bathroom suite costing years ago will have 9 years left of its 12-year lifespan. LYHA will therefore pay the tenant 75% of the cost of the improvement, as 9 years is 75% of the lifespan. The tenants would receive 375. The amount of compensation may be adjusted if the improvement has deteriorated greater than provided for in the notional life of the improvement. Compensation is not payable if the claim is less than 50. The maximum in any one claim is Compensation will only be paid where the tenant can provide copies of original receipts or proof of payment for the alteration and the works are in good condition subject to normal wear and tear. 7.1 Qualifying Improvements and their notional lifespan The improvements that the Right to Compensation for Improvements applies to and their notional life spans are as follows: 20 years loft insulation cavity wall insulation double glazing secondary double glazing external window replacement 15 years rewiring provision of power, lighting or other electrical fittings smoke detectors wired into the electrical circuit 12 years bath wash hand basin Compensation Policy Version: 2.0 Page 4

5 toilet space or water heater 10 years kitchen sink storage cupboards in bathroom or kitchen work surfaces for food preparation insulation of pipes, water tank or cylinder improvements to the security of the building (excluding alarms) 8 years draught proofing of external doors or windows 7 years thermostatic radiator valves 8.0 WHERE COMPENSATION IS NOT PAYABLE There are circumstances where the association will not pay compensation, these being: 1. Where a tenant could normally be expected to have insurance cover, such as for personal possessions and home contents. 2. Where a claim by the tenant is the subject of a claim against the association s insurers. 3. Where a claim is determined by the association s insurers. 4. Where the inconvenience and/or financial loss is due to a fault on behalf of the tenant. 9.0 EX-GRATIA PAYMENTS An Ex-Gratia Payment is a payment made to an individual in respect of loss or damage to personal property in a situation where the association is willing to make some reimbursement without accepting any liability for the loss or damage. An Ex Gratia payment should not be made in situations where the loss is fully insured, either by the individual or the association REVIEW The arrangements within this policy will be reviewed every 2 years. Reviewed by: Bruce Johnson January 2011 Compensation Policy Version: 2.0 Page 5

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