We understand that you want to make your home your own and there may be times that you want to make improvements to your home. We want to make sure those improvements are done safely and won't cause you any issues if or when it is time to move on. That's why we ask you to let us know what improvements you are planning.
- Applying for permission
- Compensation for improvements
- Electrical work
- Hardstanding's and dropped kerbs
- Internal doors
To request permission to make improvements just complete our online form with as much detail as possible about your plans.
After receiving your request, your rent account will be checked for any arrears.
Please note: If you are in arrears, permission will not be granted. You can re-apply once your rent account is clear of arrears.
Once you have been granted permission, you can carry out the work.
We then ask that when the work has been completed, you let us know.
Any improvements you carry out will not increase the price of your home, if you later decide to buy your home through right to buy.
If you want to move and have altered the layout of the property or made any additions without our permission, you may have to remove them and return the property to its original condition. You may also be recharged for any further work we are required to do as a result.
Please check if planning permission is required first before carrying out any works.
If you have carried out any improvements with our permission and decide to move, you may be able to claim compensation under the compensation for improvements scheme.
The Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 gives secure tenants the right to compensation for certain tenant financed, qualifying improvements that have had the written permission of the Council. An application can be made by the tenant within 28 days before or 14 days after the end of the tenancy.
If granted permission, caravans should be kept in a good condition. Permission will be reviewed every 12 months. The caravan cannot be used for residential purposes.
You will be requested to follow the below CCTV guidance:
- You fully adhere to the Data Protection Act.
- The camera is used at a domestic property and for the protection of your property only.
- It is not used to view, record or capture others where a persons rights and/or privacy may be infringed or which may otherwise intrude, annoy, distress, or alarm persons.
- You should regularly delete the recordings and they should not kept for longer than is necessary for the protection of your property.
- You are responsible for all of the information that is recorded on your system, you should keep your recordings secure and access to them to a minimum.
- Any recorded footage may be required by the Police as evidence and this must be provided to them at their request.
- You must also adhere to any updated versions of this guidance throughout the lifetime of your CCTV operations. See the government guidance on the use of domestic CCTV.
Most electrical work must be carried out by a qualified electrician. If electrical works are carried out, we will ask to see the Certificate of Electrical Compliance on completion.
Please note you can gain permission to erect a fence or gate up to 3ft high in the front garden or next to a highway, or up to 6ft high in the rear garden. If you wish to erect fencing higher than stated, you will need to submit a planning application.
In order to have a dropped kerb installed to access the public highway, you must seek consent from the County Council. This consent is to ensure that any proposed crossing does not present a safety hazard to other users of the highway and to ensure that all works are carried out to the appropriate standard.
Please visit the Cambridgeshire County Council for information and guidance on how to apply for a dropped kerb.
Permission will be granted for you to park a vehicle in your garden subject to the following specification and conditions:
1. The hardstanding and driveway is to consist of 2 strips not less than 450mm wide and constructed by one of the following 2 methods:
a) 50mm minimum thickness paving slabs bedded on a lean concrete mix (1:12) on a foundation of 100mm thickness consolidated hardcore. The area between the 2 strips must not be any unbound or loose material such as gravel for 6m from the highway boundary.
b) 100 mm thick tamped concrete (using suitable timber for formwork to be removed once the concrete has set) on 100 mm consolidated hardcore base. The area between the drive strips must not be any unbound or loose material such as gravel for 6m from the highway boundary.
2. Alternatively should you wish to provide a concrete surfaced standing area as opposed to the 2 strips options the following specification and conditions will apply:
a) The hardstanding is to be constructed, to falls to allow drainage and directed away from the public highway, of 100mm thick tamped concrete (using suitable timber for formwork) on 100mm consolidated hardcore base and should not exceed 5m by 2.5m in size unless previously agreed. The formwork is to be removed once the concrete has set. If necessary drive strips are to be constructed as 1(b) above from the boundary to the hardstanding.
NOTE: No unbound or loose material is permitted within 6m of the highway boundary. The Highway Authority requires this for highway safety reasons and will not give permission to construct the crossover within the highway if this part of the hardstanding construction is unbound/ loose material.
3. The position of the access driveway and hardstanding will depend upon the nature of the site and will be agreed with the tenant following a site inspection. The preferred position of the parking of the vehicle will be at the side or rear of the house but if this is not practicable consideration will be given for parking on the front garden.
4. If a ditch has be crossed to provide an access it shall be piped with concrete pipes (size to be agreed with the County Council Highways Department) and surrounded in pea shingle covered with consolidated hardcore and surfaced with concrete (1:2:4) mix with a minimum of 150 mm thickness and to extend to a minimum of 450mm wider than the existing ditch. Prior to this 225mm retaining walls must be built in either concrete or brickwork.
5. Should a tenant vacate the house the hardstanding and gates (if erected) are to remain the property of the Council.
6. An opening the width of the new driveway is to be formed neatly in the existing fence, hedge or wall and all disturbance made good at each side of the new opening. New terminal posts set in concrete are to be erected at each side of the opening in a wall.
7. The erection of double gates is optional and in some cases may not be allowed as part of the planning permission. Gates and gateposts, if allowed, must be on the highway boundary line. If gates are erected these should not exceed 900mm in height and should be treated with a timber preservative upon completion and have appropriate ironmongery fittings.
8. Gate and fittings should match existing and the width of the opening should not exceed 2.13m. No gates will be allowed to open outwards over the public footpath. The existing fence is not to be adapted and used as gates.
9. The Council will not undertake and pay to have the vehicle access constructed lower the kerb and form a tarmac crossover.
10. Should approval be required for removing trees, lamp posts, telegraph poles and other erections on the highway to enable the crossing to be constructed then the tenant will have to meet the cost of the work.
11. The parking of lorries, coaches and commercial vehicles or plant is not permitted on Council property.
12. The vehicle must be parked completely within the curtilage of the property and no vehicle may be left projecting in front of the fence line or in a position where it would obstruct light to an adjoining property.
13. Sheds, tents or other structure shall not be erected for the protection of the vehicle.
14. Maintenance or other work shall not be carried out to the vehicle, which is likely to cause annoyance to the neighbours, and the parking space shall be kept in a clean and tidy condition.
15. Work on the hardstanding is not to be started by the tenant until his/her application has been approved. All work is to be completed to the entire satisfaction of the Corporate Manager Affordable Housing within six months of the date of approval, unless otherwise agreed. This time period allows for the planning application to be submitted and to be approved which will take about 2 months.
16. The Council reserves the right for the hardstanding to be re-sited or removed at any time should they require you to do so at no cost to the Council.
17. Permission will only be granted if your rent account is not in arrears.
NOTE: Planning consent may be required for these works. Also a new access from a classified road may require that a turning space be provided within the curtilage of the property in order that the vehicle can enter and leave in a forward gear.
No works are to commence until formal planning permission has been granted.
If you are replacing internal doors they need to be fireproof. The original doors will need to be preserved and upon terminating your tenancy and vacating the premises, you may be required to reinstate the original doors.