Private sector housing service standards
What we do
We provide advice and guidance on housing conditions to tenants in private and social housing, and to businesses (which includes landlords, property agents, managing agents and letting agents). Our aim is to maintain and improve housing conditions in property tenures, by providing advice and support, whilst using the enforcement options in our Private sector housing enforcement policy.
Our service will be delivered in accordance with the requirements of the Regulators’ Code.
How we work
We are committed to providing an efficient, courteous and helpful service.
We ensure that information and guidance is available to help those we regulate meet their statutory requirements.
We use a risk based approach to target out resources, including monitoring and checking compliance with statutory requirements.
We will provide all customers with equal access to services, and provide written documents that are easy to read, and we will provide a translation into another language when requested.
Our customer service commitment
We are committed to providing services to customers by e-mail, phone or post, or in person.
If you phone us we will:
- answer your call promptly and politely
- deal with your query immediately or ensure you are called back within one working day and no later than five working days
If we visit you we will:
- give you notice of a visit wherever possible
- always be punctual, efficient and respectful of your home
- make provision for any special needs you may have
- carry identification cards to show you before we come in
- leave a calling card if you are not in
If you visit us we will;
- need to see you in person at the Gateway (as the town hall is not a public access building) unless you are dropping off documents at the Town Hall
If you write to us we will:
- respond to your letter or email as quickly and efficiently as possible with an acknowledgement within five working days, and a full response within ten working days
- fully explain the action we propose to take
- keep you informed of any significant developments and keep you updated
- respond using clear, plain English
- once your request or complaint has been resolved contact you to advise you of the outcome and that we are closing the case
We expect tenants in both private and social housing to contact their landlord first in writing by letter or email, to allow the landlord an opportunity to resolve the problem.
We also administer mandatory and discretionary grant assistance, and we will process applications in an efficient manner to avoid unnecessary delays.
Working with businesses and helping you to get it right
You can expect and will receive an efficient and professional service from us. Where a business needs advice to meet legal obligations we will:
- agree timescales and expectations with you where possible
- agree preferred methods of communication
- provide clear advice that supports you to reach compliance with legislation without imposing unnecessary burdens
- ensure that any verbal advice you receive is confirmed in writing if requested
- provide details of how to discuss any concerns you may have
- explain how to appeal against formal enforcement action
- recognise good practice
How to contact us
Our contact details are as follows:
Private Sector Housing Team
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
Royal Tunbridge Wells
Telephone: 01892 554241
If you contact us we will ask for your name and contact details. We treat all contact in confidence unless you have given us permission to share your details with others, or there is an operational or legal reason why we need to do so.
Comments and complaints
We value your input to help us to ensure that our service is meeting your needs, and we would like to hear from you to help us to make changes where we need to. We are always willing to discuss with you the reasons why we have acted in a particular way, or asked you to act in a particular way.
You can get in touch with the officer dealing with your case, or the Private Sector Housing Manager, using the contact details above. Complaints about our service can be made through the Council’s complaints procedure.