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How can I make a complaint?

We want to provide you with the best possible service, however there may be times when you are not happy and wish to complain. When a tenant complains we will treat the complaint seriously and investigate it fairly.

What is a complaint?

An expression of dissatisfaction, however made, about the standard of service, actions or lack of action by the organisation, its own staff, or those acting on its behalf, affecting an individual resident or group of residents.

A complaint is when a tenant is unhappy with us and wants us to put it right. Examples of complaints are:

  • Taking too long to do something;
  • Not explaining why we have done something;
  • A problem with your home;
  • A repair not being carried our properly.

You can complain about our standard of service, actions, or lack of action by us or anyone working for us (e.g. contractors) within six months of the issue happening. We may use our discretion to accept older complaints if there’s good reason why you hadn’t raised it before. If the problem is a recurring or ongoing issue, we’ll consider any older reports as background to the investigation.

What is not a complaint?

Complaints are issues with the services we provide. A problem such as a dispute with neighbours is not considered a complaint.

A complaint should not cover:

  • Services for which RHS is not responsible;
  • Complaints submitted six months or more after the issue occurred and which is bought to RHS’s attention for the first time;
  • Where the complainant is an employee of RHS;
  • Reporting repairs, anti-social behaviour or bulk rubbish;
  • Complaints that relate to ASB case management that is currently ongoing. These will be dealt with in line with RHS’s Anti-Social Behaviour Policy in the first instance.

How to make a complaint

Complaints can be made to us, in a variety of ways:

  • Letter or email
  • Telephone
  • In person
  • Online customer portal
  • Our website

What to expect if making a complaint

The Housing Ombudsman Service defines a service request as “a request from a resident to their landlord requiring action to be taken to put something right.”

When you first let us know about your concern, at the start we will ask you what you would like us to do to put things right. We can often resolve service requests, such as a missed appointment immediately with an apology, and by providing another appointment. We may be able to resolve issues like this outside of our complaints process.

Stage 1: Your complaint will be allocated to an Investigating Officer who will contact you within 5 working days, to talk about your complaint and understand the problem. We aim to resolve your complaint within 10 working days. If we are unable to reach a decision within 10 working days, we will provide you with an explanation and aim to agree a new response date with you.

Stage 2: Complaint Review: If you are dissatisfied with our response at Stage 1, you can progress your complaint to Stage 2. At this stage, your complaint will be reviewed by a Director, who will contact you within 5 working days to understand the problem. We aim to resolve your complaint within 20 working days but if the investigation may take longer, we will agree a timescale with you.

Your responsibility

At each stage, you must be clear about the reasons you remain dissatisfied with our reply and the outcome you would like to see your complaint resolved. You will be required to provide information or evidence as to why you feel the complaint was not resolved fully, which must be provided within 10 working days, from the date of the final complaint response.

You can request that your complaint is considered by a designated person. Councillors and MPs are designated people. Their role is to assist in resolving complaints.

We can also recognise a tenant panel, as designated for considering complaints.

We expect all residents to behave reasonably and co-operate with us throughout our complaints process.

Housing Ombudsman Service

You are able to contact the Housing Ombudsman Service at any point throughout your complaint for advice. Once you’ve exhausted our complaints process at Stage 2, you may ask the Housing Ombudsman to mediate or investigate the case on your behalf.

The Housing Ombudsman Service may not consider complaints that fall within the jurisdiction of another:

  • Ombudsman
  • Complaints-handling body (such as the Information Commissioner)
  • Regulator (such as the Regulator of Social Housing or Building Safety Regulator)

Appropriate referral will depend on the specific complaint. We, or the Ombudsman, will signpost you to the relevant body as appropriate.

Please click here to view our self-assessment of the Housing Ombudsman’s Complaint Handling code

You can find Housing Ombudsman Service contact details below, on our website, or at

Housing Ombudsman Service

PO Box 152


L33 7WQ

Telephone: 0300 111 3000


Please click here to view our Complaints Policy in full.

If you’d still like to make a complaint, please complete the Complaints web form here.

Please click here to view our Complaints Policy in full.