Maintenance of Your Home

Download this page as a PDF (PDF 48kb)

Looking after your home

Sapphire Independent Housing is responsible for repairing the structure and outside of your home, our fixtures and fittings and any communal shared areas.

These will include

  • the roof, walls, doors and windows
  • drains and outside pipes
  • installations for supplying gas (including boilers) water, electricity, installations for heating rooms and water and any lift service
  • fixtures and fittings (including sinks, baths, toilets, kitchen units and waste pipes)
  • shared areas including entrances and stairways

Your responsibilities

You are responsible for keeping your home in a good decorative condition and ensuring minor repairs such as replacing tap washers, fuses and light bulbs. You must also deal with:

  • lost keys and lock changes
  • decoration inside your home
  • replacing cupboard latches, handles and hinges
  • unblocking sinks, hand basins and baths and replacing toilet seats
  • cracked or broken glass in windows and doors caused by you, your family or visitors
  • any damage caused to the property by you, your family or visitors including drains blocked due to misuse
  • TV aerials (unless they are shared aerials)
  • shed and garden fixtures, including clothes lines

We may carry out the above repairs if you ask us to but we will charge you the cost of doing so.

Rechargeable repairs

If we are responsible for repairing an item but feel that the damage has been caused by neglect or carelessness by you, your family or visitors we will charge you for the repair.

Planned maintenance

Planned maintenance is different from day-to-day repairs. It involves major repairs or improvements such as installing new windows, kitchen or bathroom. ICH is responsible for this work and we will inform you in advance of any work planned.

Burst Pipes

You should turn off the water at the mains stopcock and report the problem immediately to us. Please make sure you know where the mains stopcock is.

Gas Appliances

By law we have to carry out an annual safety inspection of any gas appliances, pipe work and flues installed in your home. A specialist gas engineer will contact you to arrange an appointment to do this and they must be granted access otherwise a resident risks legal action.
If you smell gas you should report the problem to the National Grid immediately on 0800 111 999.


If you have an electrical fault you should turn off the supply at the mains and report the problem to us immediately.

Fire Safety

You can help prevent fire by turning off electrical appliances like TVs when not in use and especially when you leave the house.

Never leave lit candles unattended. Smoke alarms can save your life by giving you an early warning of fire so you should check them regularly to make sure they are working. Do not store flammable substances such as petrol or bottled gas in your home or in communal areas.

If there is a fire, dial 999 immediately and ask for the fire brigade. Get out of the building as quickly as possible, closing doors behind you. Leave the building using the stairs not the lift if it safe to do so.


Many residents believe that their furniture, belongings and decorations are insured against fire, water theft and vandalism. This is not the case. Our insurance does not cover tenants’ possessions.
You are responsible for arranging suitable contents insurance for your home.

If you are in any doubt about repairs, home safety, insurance or other repair-related issues do contact us on 020 7485 8889 or and we will ensure the appropriate person is notified.