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Fairfield Housing Association
Fairfield Housing Muirton

FAQ

Becoming a Tenant

How do I apply for a property with Fairfield Housing Association?

We are part of a Common Housing Register which is maintained by Perth & Kinross Council. You can find out more information on how to apply here

Do I have to make a payment upfront?

Yes. 

Our rents are payable monthly, in advance. This means that everyone is due to pay their first month’s rent when they sign for their tenancy. If you are in receipt of Housing Benefit or Universal Credit Housing Costs and are not able to pay the full month at the time you sign for your tenancy you will be asked to make an arrangement to make payments on an ongoing basis until your rent account is up to date.


Paying Your Rent

How often is rent charged?

Rent is charged on the 1st of every month. Payments are due on or before this date every month.

Are there any ‘rent free’ weeks?

No. 

The annual rent charge is divided equally across all 12 months to keep your monthly payments as low as possible.

How do I make rent payments?

The easiest way to make payments is by Direct Debit, which can be set up quickly over the phone on 01738 630738.

You can also pay by the following methods:

  • Standing order (set up through your own bank)

  • Allpay Card (at your local shop)

  • Online at Allpay (remember to register first)

  • Via mobile App

  • By Text

  • Automated payment phoneline 0844 557 8321

  • In person at our office (except during office closures) or by phone 01738 630738, during office hours.

What happens if I cannot pay my rent?

If you are having difficulties making payments, or even think you might have difficulties making a payment, it is extremely important that you contact your Housing Officer immediately. They will give you advice and support to help you to prevent the situation from getting worse.

You can email us on reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738. 

Never ignore your rent, or attempts to contact you about it, as rent arrears can lead to eviction if they are not dealt with. We are here to help.

How do I request a refund for overpaid rent?

If you think you have overpaid and would like a refund please contact the office on reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738. We will ask you to complete a refund form (which we need for auditing purposes) and your payment will be sent to your bank account directly. Please allow 10working days for payment to be made from receipt of your completed form.


Reporting a Repair

How do I report a repair?

You can find detailed information about reporting repairs here

How long will my repair take?

Our staff will advise you of the repair priority and target time when you contact us. Repairs are classified as:

Category

Repair

Definition

Response Time

Examples

1

Emergency

Any situation where there is an immediate danger to the tenant, property or by a member of public reporting.

Within four hours and made safe or repaired within 24 hours of reporting.

No electricity/ loss of power, flooding blocked toilet, sink, etc.

2

Urgent

Where there is substantial inconvenience to the tenant but no immediate threat to health or security of property.

Three working days from contractor receiving order.

Partial loss of power, unsafe timber flooring, stair treads, etc.

3

Standard

Non-urgent repairs where there is no immediate danger to the tenant or general public.

Ten working days from contractor receiving order

Kitchen repair, door handle change, broken fence, etc.

Can you give me a time that the tradespeople will arrive?

Where possible we will offer you a morning (AM) 8.45 am to 12.30pm or afternoon (PM) 12.30pm to 4.30pm appointment on a weekday of your choice.

The contractor will then visit you at the given time to complete the repair. If a repair is classed as an emergency/qualifying our contractors will attend within four hours, so you must stay in the home for them.

Do I need to be at home for the tradespeople coming?

Yes.It is very important that you, or someone you trust is at the property to let the contractors in to do the work. Never leave your door unlocked, as our contractors will not enter an empty home, and this puts your property at risk.

The only time you will not have to stay home is where the repair is only outside and no one needs to come into your house. We will be able to tell you if this is the case.


Estate Services

How often are the closes cleaned?

The closes are cleaned by a contractor once per week. However, we expect all tenants to keep their home and surrounding areas clean and tidy, therefore if you spill something, or bring mess into the close at any time, please clean this up.

How often is the area checked?

During normal working times staff are out and about across our different communities several times a week. This allows us to pick up on communal repairs needed or identify issues such as untidy gardens. 

In the summer months gardens are monitored more closely to try to prevent them becoming overgrown. 

Please still let us know if there are particular issues/repairs needed in an area, so that nothing gets missed.

What is the ‘bulky uplift service’?

The Bulky Uplift Service is a service offered to tenants in the Fairfield Area, paid for through a caretaking service charge. 

We will collect large household items once a week from the front of a building, but these items must be reported to the office in advance of collection and must only be put outside the evening before.

Please note that this service is for large items only. It does not include general waste, laminate flooring etc, which should be disposed of in the appropriate bins provided by PKC.

Do you provide a grass cutting service?

Yes. At the moment we provide a limited Free grass cutting service, but this is only available to people who meet certain health criteria.

When are my bins collected?

You can find out your bin collection days, and print off a calendar here.

Who is responsible for maintaining the landscaped areas?

The landscaped areas are maintained either by ourselves or by PKC, depending on where they are and the type of landscaping. If you have a particular area of concern please contact us and we will investigate this.


Other Services

Do you offer benefits advice?

Our Housing Officers are able to offer some advice regarding certain benefits. If we cannot provide everything you require then we are able to make you a referral to a local advice agency who will be able to help you further. These agencies include PKC Welfare Rights Team and Citizens Advice Bureaux.

Are there any social activities in the area?

Local Community Centres and Notice Boards are a great way to find out what is happening in your area. 

During normal times we have offered various activities within our offices at Fairfield, including: Tea,Toast & Bingo, Yoga and walking groups. We hope to be able to offer activities again when restrictions allow, and we are keen to look at new activities including local Gardening Groups. Please get in touch with us if you are interested in being involved.

Can you help me get in touch with other services I might need?

Yes. We would always encourage our tenants to keep in touch with us and ask us if you need any help. If we cannot help you ourselves then we will always do our best to find you someone who can.


Making a Complaint / Giving a Compliment

How do I make a complaint about another tenant?

We want everyone to enjoy living in their home, and if another tenant’s behaviour is stopping you from doing this then it is important that you let us know, so that we can investigate.

You can contact us via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours.

How do I make a complaint about poor service/something else?

We strive to provide the best possible service to our tenants but we know that we do not always get it right. It is important that we know if something has gone wrong so that we can make sure that we learn from it. If you are unhappy about any service you have received please let us know via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours.

How do I give a compliment for good service?

We are always delighted to hear when tenants are happy with our services and it makes staff happy in their work too. If You would like to pass on a compliment then you can also do so via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours.


Permissions

What kind of things do I need permission for?

You need permission to make any changes to your home that are not basic decoration, for example; changing a light fitting, replacing doors, building a shed, laying garden slabs, building a fence.

You also need permission if you wish to keep a pet in the property.

Running any kind of business from the property also requires permission. For example; childminding, ebay shop, hairdressing.

These are just examples and we would always recommend that you contact us to find out of you need permission before going ahead.

Why do I need to ask for permission?

It is part of the terms of your tenancy agreement that you must obtain our permission for certain things. This is to make sure that changes are not made to properties which may make them unsafe. It is also intended to limit the potential for anti-social issues which may arise due to the use of a property or number/types of pets kept.

How do I request permission?

To request permission, contact the office via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours. For pet permission there is a basic form that we will ask you to complete. For other forms of permission, we will require a bit more information and we will be able to tell you about this when we discuss your request.

What happens if I do not get permission when it is needed?

If you did not request/receive permission before going ahead then you must contact us straight away to discuss your particular situation. 

If permission was refused and you continued anyway then we may have to ask you to rectify the situation. This may mean; restoring the property to it’s original state, removing a pet, closing a business. We may also consider taking legal action against you for the breach of your tenancy agreement.

If you made changes to your property and you intend to move, you must make sure that you have permission in place for the changes before you move, or you may be asked to return the property to it’s original state. If you move without doing this then you may be charged to put the work right.


Changing Your Tenancy

How do I add someone to my tenancy?

You should think very carefully before giving someone else a shared right to your tenancy, and do not feel pressured into doing so. Adding someone to your tenancy is very different to adding them to your household.

The person you wish to add to the tenancy must also have been registered as living at the address on the household details we hold, for at least 12months prior to application. If you decide you wish to give someone shared rights to your tenancy then you must complete an application, which can be obtained by contacting the office via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours.

How do I remove someone from my tenancy?

You cannot remove someone from your tenancy without their written tenancy termination, or confirmation of their death if they have passed away.

If a joint tenant has moved out of the property without terminating their rights to the tenancy then we can follow abandonment procedures to end their tenancy, but you must contact us to let us know in this situation.

Can I swap my property with a tenant of another property?

It is possible to do what is called a ‘mutual exchange’, as long as both tenants meet the criteria for the exchange. If you think this is something you might want to consider then your Housing Officer will be able to tell you a bit more about it; get in touch to have a chat.

Can I rent my property to someone else?

In certain circumstances we may allow you to do what is called a ‘sub-let’, whereby you temporarily rent your property to another person. You would still remain responsible for the tenancy and the payment of the rent during that time, and the sub-tenant would not have any rights to your tenancy. Please contact your Housing Officer if this is something you would like to look into.

Can I give my tenancy to someone else?

In certain circumstances it may be possible to ‘Assign’ your tenancy to another household member. You must have been resident as a tenant in the property for at least 12 months before you can assign a tenancy. The person you wish to assign the tenancy to must also have been registered as living at the address on the household details we hold, for at least 12months prior to application. You can discuss this further with your Housing Officer, or request an application via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours.


Getting Involved with the Association/Community

How do I get involved with the Association?

We are always looking for people to put themselves forward to become involved with the Association. This might be through joining our Committee, a focus group, an armchair feedback group, or helping us to set up a gardening group, for example.

If you would like to find out more about how you can get involved with the Association please contact us via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours.

Are there any community groups in my area?

Community Centres and local notice boards are a good place to look for community groups in your area. PKC also holds details of local community councils which can be found here

There are also a number of Facebook pages set up by residents of different areas, which people can use to talk about issues in an area or share ideas. You can search by the name of your area to see what is available.


Ending Your Tenancy

How do I end my tenancy?

To end your tenancy you must give us 28 days written notice. There is a form to complete which we can provide you with if you contact us at the office via email reception@fha.scot or phone 01738 630738 during office hours.

What do I do if I can’t take all of my belongings with me?

If you are unable to remove all of your belongings you must contact us to discuss this before you leave. If it is only a few items then we may be able to remove these for you without extra charges. If there are a lot of items then we will give you an idea of how much you would be charged to have these removed.

If you have furniture which could be re-homed there are organisations which may collect items which are in good condition that they could sell on/donate. Such local organisations include: British Heart Foundation, Transform Furniture Ltd and Push Furniture Reuse. All can be found online.

What happens if I need longer to move?

If you need more than 28 days to move please let us know as soon as possible and we can change your agreed termination date. 

What happens if I hand my keys in early?

You will be charged rent for the whole of your notice period however, if you hand your keys in early we will do our best to re-let the property as quickly as possible. If we are able to do this before your official termination date then we will refund you any credit that this creates on your rent account.

Can I change my mind?

Yes. If you decide during your notice period that you no longer wish to move then please contact us straight away and we will ask you to confirm in writing that you wish to withdraw your termination.

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