Estate Management refers to the effective management of the environment around our properties and any common areas, to ensure that your neighbourhood is an attractive, well maintained, safe and secure place to live. An area which is well cared for will give residents a sense of pride in their neighbourhood and encourage new tenants to move into the area.

Our estate management policy outlines the way in which we will carry out our estate management responsibilities.

Our main objectives are to:

1.  Manage the environment around our properties and common areas effectively.

2.  Ensure that all residents are aware of their respective responsibilities.

3.  Place emphasis on preventative measures and also resolve issues/problems at an early stage. 

4.  Seek to work in close co-operation with other organisations that provide services in the area (e.g. cleansing, street lighting, roads, police etc).

5.  Comply with legal duties, regulatory requirements and good practice requirements.

6.  Carry out regular estate inspections and communicate effectively with other agencies/departments.

7.  Carry out regular satisfaction surveys to ensure that our aims and objectives are meeting the expectations of our residents.

Information/Guidance Provided By Your Housing Officer

Your Housing Officer will ensure that all tenants are aware of their obligations and will seek to minimise problems when a tenancy is accepted by:

1.  Explaining all tenancy obligations in detail when you accept a tenancy.

2.  Ensuring that you receive a copy of the Tenants' Handbook.

3.  Ensuring that you are clear about your tenancy obligations at the settling in visit carried out shortly after you move in.

4.  Providing you with contact details and information on services provided by West Dunbartonshire Council and other appropriate external agencies.

Estate Management Inspections

Your Housing Officer will carry out regular and programmed estate, backcourt and stair/close inspections in order to record and monitor the condition of these areas and take any necessary remedial action. Residents are welcome to attend. Please contact your Housing Officer should you wish to do so.

Inspections of common areas will be carried out on a regular basis.

The purpose of these inspections is to check on issues such as close/stair cleaning standards, dumping of rubbish/bulk in communal areas, litter, graffiti, vandalism, untidy gardens, animal nuisance/dog fouling, illegal parking, abandoned vehicles and potentially abandoned properties, repairs and health and safety issues.  If the inspections highlight any problems then the Housing Officer will begin immediate action to rectify.

Common Areas

Common area include: entrance doorways; close area/stairs; bin stores; backcourts/drying areas; pathways and driveways/parking bays.  If your home is within a common close you are required to keep the close and backcourt areas clean, clear, litter free and tidy on a weekly basis.

Your Housing Officer will take action against individuals who fail to do this. This may involve identifying and speaking to the individual(s) directly, issuing of warning letters and/or the introduction of a close cleaning rota where required. If there is no improvement we may consider carrying out any necessary work with the associated costs being recharged to each tenant on a proportionate basis.

Refuse Disposal / Bulk Items

You will be notified at the start of your tenancy of refuse disposal arrangements and scheduled days for uplift of refuse etc.  Bin stores should be kept in a clean and tidy condition by residents and rubbish containers must be returned to the bin store as soon as the rubbish has been collected.  You must report any bulk items you have to West Dunbartonshire Council for uplift. They will chargefor this service.

Any tenant who fails to do so is in breach of their tenancy conditions. Continued failure/refusal to arrange for the proper disposal of bulk items following warnings by the Housing Officer may result in the Association carrying out the necessary work and the associated costs being recharged to the tenant(s) involved.

Individual Gardens

If you have exclusive use of a garden you must take reasonable care to keep it from becoming overgrown or untidy. Your Housing Officer will take appropriate action against you if you fail to do this without good reason. This may include formal warnings and/or the Association carrying out any remedial work and recharging the costs to you.

Abandoned Vehicles

A vehicle is generally considered to be abandoned if it meets the following criteria:

1.  The vehicle structure/glass has been damaged by vandalism as opposed to damage caused by a road accident or

2. The vehicle has unsecured doors, boot open etc and does not display a valid Tax Disc or

3. The vehicle has been partially or fully burnt out.

Any suspected abandoned vehicle should be reported to West Dunbartonshire Council.The following information should be supplied concerning the vehicle: make and model; colour; registration number; exact location and general condition.

In cases where an unroadworthy/untaxed vehicle is in your driveway or garden and you do not have permission from us, then you will be contacted by your Housing Officer to ask what your intentions are for the vehicle. If he/she is not satisfied with your response you may be asked to make arrangements to remove it.

Vandalism/Graffiti

Damage to, or the defacing of Association property due to wilful acts of graffiti, vandalism, neglect or abuse will be thoroughly investigated and attempts made to identify the person(s) responsible, who will be reported to the Police.  Where an identified perpetrator is a tenant or a member of a tenant's household, the tenant will be interviewed and a warning issued against their tenancy. He/she will also be held liable for the payment of the costs of the reinstatement/repair works.

Pets

We would encourage you to apply to us for written permission to keep pets. Please use our Permission to Keep a Pet Form. We will not withhold permission unreasonably.  We will not however allow any animal if it is prohibited by the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 or by any other law.  Dangerous dogs are defined in the Act as being:

1. Any dog of the type known as the pit bull terrier

2. Any dog of the type known as the Japanese Tosa

3. Any dog of any type designated by an order of the Secretary of State, being a type appearing to be bred for fighting or to have the characteristics of a type bred for that purpose.

We will take action where you fail to control your pet(s) in terms of your Tenancy Agreement. Should you fail to adhere to the conditions listed in your Tenancy Agreement then we are entitled to require the removal of the pet(s).  When we give permission to keep a pet the following conditions apply:

1.  You are responsible for the behaviour of any pets owned by you or anyone living with you.

2.  You must take all reasonable steps to supervise and control your pets.

3.  You must take all reasonable steps to prevent your pets causing nuisance, annoyance or danger to your neighbours. This includes fouling, noise or smell.

4.  You must take reasonable care to see that your pets do not foul or cause damage to the house, your neighbour's property, anything belonging to, or that the Association is responsible for, such as the common arears.

5.  You are responsible for the cleaning up of dog faeces.

Please note that permission to keep a pet is not transferable from existing pets to future pets. If you are thinking about getting another pet you should complete a new Permission to Keep a Pet Form.

If you have concerns about stray dogs you see in the area please report these to West Dunbartonshire Council Dog Warden Service on tel. 01389 738290 and your Housing Officer. If you suspect that a pet has been neglected, mistreated or is dangerous the SSPCA and /or Police should be contacted for advice. Please also let your Housing Officer know of your concerns if the pet owner is one of our tenants.