Right to Compensation
In 2001 the government introduced a Right to Compensation for Tenants Improvements Scheme, the purpose of which is to provide compensation for tenants who have paid for improvements but leave before they gain the full benefit of their investment.
The scheme applies to all secure tenants of Arbour Housing with compensation for eligible improvements being paid to qualifying persons when the secure tenancy ends. Compensation shall be calculated as a depreciated sum based on the original costs, less any adjustments or deductions permitted by this guidance.
You can apply for compensation when you know your tenancy is coming to an end. We recommend you let us know about this as early as possible.
To qualify for compensation under the scheme, the improvement must be on the list of eligible items listed below:
- A bath or shower
- Cavity wall insulation
- Replacing external windows or fitting secondary glazing
- Draught proofing external doors or windows, insulating pipes, water tanks or cylinders
- A kitchen sink
- Loft insulation
- Rewiring, providing additional power, lighting points, or smoke detectors
- Space or water heating
- Storage cupboards in a bathroom or kitchen
- Thermostatic radiator valves
- A toilet
Qualifying tenants and tenancies
Qualifying persons must be secure tenants of Arbour Housing.
The following persons are considered eligible to apply for compensation when their tenancy ends:
- The tenant who made the improvement or, in the case of a joint tenancy at the time the improvement was made, any of the tenants at that time.
- A person who became a tenant jointly with the improving tenant.
- A person in whom the tenancy was vested or to whom the tenancy was disposed of on the death of the improving tenants, or in the course of the administration of his estate.
- A person to whom the tenancy was assigned by the improving tenant and who would have qualified to succeed them if they had died immediately before assignment.
- A person to whom the tenancy was assigned by the improving tenant in pursuance of a property adjustment order in connection with matrimonial proceedings.
- A spouse or former spouse of the improving tenant to whom the tenancy has been transferred by an order arising out of matrimonial proceedings.
Tenants will not be eligible to apply for compensation under the scheme in any of the following circumstances:
- the tenant is purchasing his or her home (but in such cases the improvement is not taken into account in the valuation process);
- the tenancy is terminated as a result of:
(i) Arbour Housing issuing a Notice seeking Possession
(ii) a Court issuing an Order for Possession or
(iii) Arbour Housing issuing an Abandonment Notice
- a new tenancy for the same property is granted to the qualifying tenant, or all the joint tenants, whether or not with anyone else.
To qualify for compensation the improvement must have the written consent of Arbour Housing.
Consent should be obtained prior to carrying out the improvement, although in certain circumstances we may grant consent retrospectively. If retrospective consent is not granted the improvement is ineligible for compensation.
Under this scheme, Arbour Housing can impose reasonable conditions when granting consent although it cannot refuse consent without good reason.
When granting consent tenants should be reminded that, if they intend claiming compensation for the improvement in the event of terminating their tenancy, they should retain all invoices relating to the work as these will be required to determine the amount of reimbursement. Details relating to start date and completion date of works should also be retained.
Procedure for Claiming Compensation
Qualifying tenants may claim compensation when their secure tenancy ends (e.g. if they transfer to another property owned by Arbour Housing, move into accommodation owned by another landlord or purchase their own home. Please note, however, that the tenancy is not ended if you exchange your home by way of mutual assignment).
Recommended Claims and Appeals Procedure outlines the procedure and timetable for assessing claims and whilst none of the time limits are at present statutory they are considered reasonable.