Social and affordable home

Rights and responsibilities - what you can expect from us and what we expect from you

Your rights and responsibilities

At a very basic level, we provide you with a service and you, as the customer, pay us for it. In reality, our arrangement is much more than that. We have a wide-ranging, sometimes complex, relationship where you expect things from us, and we expect things from you in return.

We want our partnership to be open and fair. And if we both keep to the bargain, we should both be satisfied with the deal.

Here are some of your main rights and responsibilities as a social or affordable rent customer. The full list is in your tenancy agreement.

  • As a social or affordable renter, you can expect to pay much less than you’d pay if you rented from a private landlord
  • You’ll have what’s called an assured (permanent) or a fixed-term tenancy. A fixed-term tenancy will be for a set time (this could be six months, a year, two years, etc)
  • Before you move in, we’ll explain the tenancy agreement, your rights and responsibilities and where you can find more information
  • We'll call or visit you within six weeks of you moving in to check you've settled in ok
  • We’ll keep your home safe and secure (including doing safety checks every year)
  • We’ll work with other teams (from the council, police, etc) to keep your neighbourhood a good place to live
  • We’ll keep all of our other commitments in your tenancy agreement
  • You’ll move in at the start of your tenancy and it will be your only home
  • You’ll pay your rent in full and on time
  • You’ll keep your home, garden and shared areas in good condition
  • You’ll let us know as quickly as possible if there’s a repair needed which is our responsibility – and you’ll let us in to do the repair when we’ve booked to be there
  • You’ll do repairs that you’re responsible for as soon as possible
  • You’ll be good neighbours
  • When we ask, you’ll let us in to do the safety checks we have to do every year by law (for gas etc)
  • You’ll read your tenancy agreement when you move in and you’ll stick to all of the term and conditions
  • We'll always be friendly and polite to you
  • We’ll show you our ID cards and respect your home when we visit you
  • All our visiting staff will have been security checked. Please always ask for ID before letting anyone who says they are from VIVID into your home 
  • If we've arranged a visit, we’ll let you know if we’re running late or, if unavoidably, we have to cancel. And we’ll arrange another time
  • If we're working in your home, we'll explain what we're doing and clean up when we've finished
  • You’ll be friendly and polite to VIVID staff and contractors
  • If we’re coming to work in your home, it will be clean, safe and ready for the work to be done
  • If we’re coming to work in your home, there must be an adult (someone 18 or older) at home while we’re there
  • If you can't make a booked appointment, let us know as soon as possible to rearrange a new one
  • We’ll encourage you to contact us online or check things for yourself (including check your rent account and make rent payments). We do this because it’s easier for you and the best way for us
  • We'll deal with most enquiries when you first contact us – this isn’t always possible, but we’ll do our very best
  • If you contact us by phone or online, we'll get back to you by the end of the next working day (that’s Monday to Friday, unless there’s a bank holiday)
  • If you write to us, we'll reply to you within seven days
  • If you have a complaint, we'll deal with it within 10 days
  • We'll use your personal details to improve our services and we may share them with other agencies if we're legally allowed to. For example, if you tell us your disability makes it hard for you to move around, we’ll automatically wait a bit longer than normal when we phone you or call round
  • You’ll use our online services as much as you can. This is because it’s normally easier for you (you’ll often find the answers you’re looking for quicker) and it’s better for us (because it takes the pressure off our very busy call centre)
  • You’ll tell us if you don't understand or you need help
  • If you need to get back to us, you’ll answer as soon as you can and definitely within seven days
  • If you’ve contacted us with a problem and we’ve got back to you by the end of the next working day, (that’s Monday to Friday, unless there’s a bank holiday) please try your best to get back to us by the end of the next working day too 
  • You’ll tell us if you’re not happy about something, that way we can sort out the problem quickly
  • You’ll pay what you owe on time. If anything changes for you (such as your benefits change or you stop working) you must tell us, and let the council or the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) know, if necessary
  • If you fall behind on your rent and need help, you must tell us straight away. There’s a good chance we can work together to find a way for you to pay what you owe
  • We’ll tell you what you need to pay and how you can pay it. If we change anything, we'll give you four weeks’ notice in writing 
  • We’ll let you know as soon as you fall behind on a payment and offer you support if you’re struggling
  • We’ll talk to you before taking any legal action and explain what you need to do to get back on track
  • We want to help you to stay living in your home. We’ll work with you to help with your debts, rent arrears and help you to be more independent. We’re only a phone call away. If you need help call us on 0800 652 0898 or submit an enquiry form here
  • When we get a complaint about anti-social behaviour we'll see if we can help and work with everyone involved to sort it out if we can
  • In serious cases of anti-social behaviour, we'll use the best legal tools open to us. This includes court orders which stop someone doing something (called injunctions) and possession orders, where the court gives us permission to evict someone. We'll support you through the whole process
  • If we can't help with your neighbour dispute or anti-social behaviour case, we'll tell you who can. And we’ll offer you support to do this
  • So you keep to your tenancy agreement and it’s clear who’s causing the trouble, you need to be a good neighbour
  • You must make sure the people who visit or live with you do the same too and don’t cause trouble for anyone who lives near you
  • If you feel you can, try speaking to your neighbours about how you feel and try and sort the issue out between you. They may not realise they’re upsetting you or being a nuisance
  • If you report a problem to us, we’ll need you to also collect evidence. We can show you how to do this. Find out more here
  • You need to be prepared to take part in mediation if you have a dispute with a neighbour. And work with other teams, such as the police and the council, to help them take the best action

Need some support?

Our homeless prevention team can help reduce your debts, cut rent arrears and increase your independence

Moving home

Find out about moving to a smaller or bigger home or swapping with someone else

Anti-social behaviour

We take anti-social behaviour very seriously. We know how much it can affect your life

Still looking for help?

Doing things online is normally the quickest and easiest way, but we know it’s not always the best way for everyone. You can phone us on 0800 652 0898 (our phone lines are open 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Thursday and 8.30am to 4.30pm on Friday). Remember, the phones do get really busy. And you might have to wait.

Get in touch