Improvements, alterations, adaptations

Home improvements

To make your council property more of a home, you might want to make changes or do some DIY.

We are happy for you to make minor changes without our permission like decorating, changing carpets or putting up shelves. For anything else, you'll need to let us know what you want to do and receive written permission before you begin, otherwise you will be liable for the costs of reinstatement.

Alterations

If you would like to make an alteration to your home, you must get permission from the Council BEFORE you do the work.

  • To apply for permission to carry out your own alterations, please complete our tenants alterations online form giving full details of what you propose to do.

Permission will usually be given, provided the request is reasonable, and the work will be completed to a good standard.

If the works are considered as intrusive, we may need an asbestos survey to be carried out first, or we can share with you a survey we already have.

Equipment and adaptations

  • If you want to make an alteration to help someone who is disabled you may be eligible for equipment and adaptations from the Council.

The Council does have housing adapted for people with disabilities and when these become available, priority is given to people who need those adaptations. To be considered for an adapted property you will require an occupational therapy assessment.

Cyclical maintenance

There are repairs and inspections that we carry out on a cyclical basis including gas safety, and electrical installation inspections, which we do for your safety and wellbeing. It is important to let us in for inspection visits as well as to carry out repairs that have been identified. If you do not, this may lead to legal proceedings to gain access and force entry to fulfil our legal obligations.

You should also make sure that any equipment in your home is kept in clean and working order, this includes safety equipment such as smoke alarms. If you think council equipment is damaged, has become unreliable or is broken you should report this for a repair.

Find out more

Gas safety inspection

These are statutory gas safety checks to council-fitted appliances such as boilers and fires. This will be carried out by Mears Gas Safe registered engineers on an annual basis.

 

Smoke and carbon monoxide inspections

We will maintain all smoke and heat detectors, and carbon monoxide alarms. This is completed as a part of our annual gas safety inspection.

Electrical safety inspection

This is a five-year inspection of the property's electrics. This will be carried out by Mears NICIEC registered engineers.

Lifts and stairlifts

All lifts and stairlifts within our properties will be serviced and maintained in accordance with legislative servicing and inspection regimes.

Planned maintenance

We will continually improve the quality of Council owned housing in Milton Keynes through our planned maintenance investment programme and will ensure that your home meets Decent Homes Requirements and this means that your home will be:

  • Fit for human habitation, which means that they should be safe, healthy and free from things that could cause you or your household serious harm.

  • In a reasonable state of repair.

  • Equipped with reasonably modern facilities and services.

  • Not feel too hot or too cold.

We have a dedicated team within Mears who work with us to deliver the major repairs and improvements to your property. These improvements are planned for within a maintenance programme and include replacing kitchens, bathrooms, doors, windows, and boiler and heating systems. You will be contacted when a planned improvement is due and a survey will follow to confirm the need for replacement which is based on its current condition.

Our current replacement cycles

 

Lifecycle (in years) 

Kitchen

20

Bathroom

30

Windows and doors

30

Roofs

60

 

At times we also need to undertake large scale works, referred to as major works, and we will tell you about our plans for these well before they start. We will do this by using a range of methods that can include sending letters, arranging drop-ins, surgeries, public meetings and we sometimes offer opportunities to see examples of the work. We do this to make sure that you know what works are being planned, how they could affect you and make sure that you have an opportunity to ask any questions that you have.