We want you to enjoy living in our homes so if you do live in a flat or apartment please show consideration for your neighbours.

Communal areas

Communal areas in your block include the stairs and stairwells, landing and corridors, please keep these areas free to avoid any risks during an emergency situation or if there is a fire.

More information on fire safety in your home in flats and apartments.

It's everyone's responsibility in a flat or apartment to keep communal areas clear. Please don't store or leave any of the following in your communal area:

  • Rubbish
  • Furniture
  • Prams or push chairs
  • Plants
  • Doormats
  • Play equipment
  • Mobility scooters
  • Any other personal items

Door entry systems

We provide door entry systems on blocks of flats and maisonettes so that only genuine tenants and their visitors can get in. Please help to keep the flats safe and do not:

  • let someone you do not know into the building
  • let visitors into the building for your neighbour
  • ask your neighbours to let visitors in for you
  • wedge the door open and leave it open for any reason.

If you let strangers into the building, you will reduce the security for yourself and everyone else living in the block.

Housekeeping in your block

What you can keep in communal areas

All exit routes must be kept clear of obstructions and trip hazards at all times.

It is extremely important that items which could easily burn, or if burned could give off toxic smoke, are kept out the communal areas.

To minimise the risks to you and your neighbours, we will normally only allow the following items in communal areas:

Blocks over three storeys

  • Nothing allowed.
  • All landings, foyers, stairwells and walkways must be kept free of all items

Three storey blocks

  • Doormats - provided these lie flat and are less than 20mm thick at the edges
  • Frame covered pictures (behind glass)
  • Non-flammable ornaments
  • Living plants (but not Christmas trees)

Blocks less than three storeys

  • Doormats - provided these lie flat and are less than 20mm thick at the edges
  • Frame covered pictures (behind glass)
  • Non-flammable ornaments
  • Hardwood furniture i.e. not rattan, cane, pine etc. No upholstered furniture or soft furnishings
  • Living plants (but not Christmas trees)
  • Curtains or nets are allowed, but they must display fire-resistant labels or you will need to show that they have been treated with flame retardant spray
  • Carpets are allowed if the block has not had non-slip flooring installed, but these must be fitted wall to wall and not loose remnants

Your area housing manager is responsible for the appearance of communal areas and keeping health and safety risks to an acceptable level. Please contact them if you would like to place any items other than those listed above in a communal area. If your request is granted, we will confirm this in writing to you.

We will remove items and withdraw existing permissions if we become concerned about the safety of communal areas.

Cleaning of communal areas

Many blocks of flats with communal areas benefit from a communal cleaning service. If your block receives this service, you can expect that every two weeks:

  • Communal areas are kept clean and tidy
  • Windows and other glass are cleaned, where they can be reached safely
  • No rubbish is left lying around in the communal area and is disposed of correctly
  • Floors are swept and mopped on a regular basis

This incurs a weekly service charge on top of your rent. You will have been advised about this when you signed for your property.

Your housing officer will be able to detail the cleaning day and general information about the cleaning service.

If you and your neighbours feel that you no longer wish to have the communal areas cleaned and you agree to do this work yourselves, please speak to your housing officer.

Blocks where a communal cleaning service is not provided

If your block does not receive a cleaning service, you and the other residents of the block are responsible for cleaning the communal areas of the block such as corridors, hallways and entrances.

We expect residents within a block to work together to ensure that the communal areas are cleaned on a regular basis and keep them to an acceptable standard (clean and tidy, mopped and swept floors, no rubbish left lying about and windows cleaned where it is safe to do so).

By keeping the area clean, pleasant and welcoming, residents can avoid an additional charge for the provision of a cleaning service.

Your housing officer will be able to provide you with further information about the cleaning of communal areas.

If you are interested in getting your block added to the communal cleaning contract, please speak to your neighbours and your housing officer to agree how this can be done.

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