Do I have to agree to home improvement works? Can I refuse?
Some works are essential for your safety, so you’re required to allow our contractors to carry out this work. However, you may choose to refuse other types of improvement work like a replacement kitchen or bathroom.
Planned works are to improve the quality of your home and we do expect customers to engage in improvement works.
Additionally, Torus have an obligation to maintain and improve your home. Therefore, we would request that customers co-operate and ensure that we can carry out component replacement works and uphold our duties as a responsible landlord.
If you decide not to allow us to complete this work, we’ll ask you to confirm this on a refusal of works form.
Please note that if you change your mind at a later date and decide you do want the improvement work, it may not be possible for us to schedule it into the same year’s programme due to commitments being made to other customers.
Who will carry out the work?
We will advise you of the contractors appointed by Torus to carry out the works.
Our main partnering contractor is HMS, however due to the large quantity of improvements we deliver each year, some elements may be completed by other/sub-contractors.
All sub-contractors have been vetted accordingly by HMS. All staff will wear identification badges. We would ask you to never let anyone into your home without seeing their identification. Our staff and contractors won’t be offended or angry if you ask to see their identification badges. If you have any doubts about a contractor’s identification, please phone Torus Customer Hub on 0800 678 1894.
All of our contractors have received customer care training; however, we would ask that you advise us of any special requirements you have. Our contractors will treat you and your home in a courteous and respectful way. If you feel that the contractor has not done this, please let us know.
The contractors generally work between the hours of 8am and 4.30pm, Monday to Friday.
Please complete and return your customer satisfaction survey when you receive it to help us to improve our services.
How will you keep me safe during the works?
Torus contractors are fully trained and given clear instructions on how to work on your home safely. They will:
- make sure all workers are appropriately skilled for the work to be undertaken.
- follow health and safety procedures at all times.
- use barriers, warning signs and notices when needed.
- ensure materials, tools and equipment are stored safely.
- take care when children/vulnerable people are present.
- not work when children under 16 are unaccompanied.
- take care of pets – however we ask that you keep your pets under control, find out more about working safe with pets here.
- ensure footpaths and access routes are kept clear and safe.
- make sure accidents, incidents, near misses or acts of aggression are reported to Torus.
- take measures to prevent unauthorised access to scaffolds and access equipment.
- ensure scaffolds allow windows to be opened for ventilation and don’t obstruct exits or escape routes.
- ensure skips that could be a fire hazard aren’t adjacent to buildings.
What can you expect from us and our contractors?
- Treat customers and their home with respect.
- Give customers plenty of warning when access is required.
- Aim to complete works to a high standard and cause as little disruption as possible.
- Aim to provide excellent customer service and will respond to all queries quickly and efficiently.
- Keep customers informed about the progress of the work, and any delays.
- Aim to complete the works on time.
- Keep customers’ homes and communal areas secure, clean and tidy, and maintain a high professional standard whilst work is carried out in or around residents’ homes.
- Protect flooring leading to and within the working area.
- Tidy up at the end of each day, and make sure materials are stacked neatly and safely.
Work hard to:
- Where possible, maintain all services and facilities.
- never leave tools overnight in residents’ homes without their permission (and at contractor’s own risk).
- Keep the work area, access roads and footpaths clean and tidy at all times.
- Keep skips secure and safe.
- Keep scaffold free from rubbish.
- Keep materials, equipment and machinery in secure areas when not in use.
- Never use customers’ cleaning equipment.
- Clean, clear, remove or recycle all waste materials appropriately.
Will I have a contact throughout the works?
The project Tenant Liaison Officer will be your first point of contact for any queries you may have and you will be given their details prior to any work starting.
How do I make a complaint?
We try hard to provide the right services, at the right time and the right place. But we also understand that there are times when you might not be satisfied.
Most problems can be resolved easily by speaking with the Tenant Liaison Officer, however if you are still not satisfied and the situation is not resolved, then please follow our Complaints procedure.
My neighbour has had work done – will I also get home improvements?
No, not necessarily. As works vary from property to property according to age and condition, you may not be offered the same work as a neighbour.
If something in your home needs fixing, please report a repair in the usual way.
Can I choose the design and colour of improvements?
Yes, you’ll be given a choice of design and colours for some elements such as kitchens, bathrooms, doors and sometimes communal or external areas. We will let you know what you’re able to choose.
Can I provide my own materials for planned improvements?
We may consider using your materials, such as tiles or taps – but this is at the discretion of our surveyor and contractor. You’ll have to talk to them about this before any work starts and you’ll be responsible for their maintenance after the installation is complete.
Will my rent increase as a result of the improvement works?
No, rent increases are not linked to the improvement works.
What is a stock condition or property assessment survey?
A stock condition survey or property assessment is when a surveyor checks the condition of your home. It typically takes 10-15 minutes and we aim to carry them out about a year ahead of any planned work in the area.
The surveyor collects information and identifies what work may need completing in the future, but they won’t be able to tell you then and there what work, if any, is needed.
If we ask you for access to complete a survey it’s important you let us in, otherwise we may not be able to schedule improvements to your home.
I have applied to buy my home; can I still have improvement works?
If you have applied to buy your property, then unfortunately only essential health and safety related works will be carried out at your home.