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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Responsibility for repairs

You are responsible for fixing some things in your home. The Housing Executive has to fix others.

Your tenancy agreement should explain who deals with different issues. 

Problems the Housing Executive will fix

The Housing Executive will usually fix problems with these things. You are responsible for fixing anything that you, or a visitor to your home, damages.

Items outside your home that the Housing Executive will fix

  • Repairs to the walls, roof, chimney, gutters, drains of the property
  • Repairs to external doors
  • Repairs to external windows, but not replacing the glass
  • Repairs to any paths, fences, walls or gates that it has provided
  • Decorating the outside of your home every seven years
  • Replacing your bin every seven years if it was damaged through normal use

Problems inside your home that the Housing Executive will fix

  • Repairs to walls, staircases and any structural woodwork
  • Sorting out timber rot
  • Repairs to damaged tiles
  • Repairs to skirting boards and windowsills

Electrical problems that the Housing Executive will fix

  • Repairs to wiring
  • Repairs to any electrical appliances that the Housing Executive installed
  • Repairs to ceiling roses
  • Repairs to sockets and switches

Heating and plumbing problems the Housing Executive will fix

  • Repairs to solid fuel cookers or stoves
  • Repairs to room heaters
  • Repairs to fire surrounds
  • Repairs to pipes and radiators
  • Repairs to boilers
  • Clearing blocked sewers
  • Clearing blocked drains as long as the blockage isn’t caused by blocked gratings

Doors and window problems the Housing Executive will fix

  • Repairs to window frames
  • Repairs to defective doors or door frames
  • Repairs to letterboxes
  • Repairs to hinges, locks and handles on your outside doors.

The Housing Executive will only fix items it installed. It won't fix anything that you bring into the property. 

Problems you have to fix in your Housing Executive home

You have to fix any problems apart from the ones above. 

Some of the things you are responsible for include:

  • Maintaining your garden
  • Decorating the inside of your home
  • Cleaning out your drains, gully traps and gratings
  • Sweeping your chimney
  • Repairs to internal plaster cracks
  • Repairs to electrical appliances you have installed, including cookers
  • Changing doorbells, plugs and fuses
  • Repairs to the front piece and basket of open fires
  • Repairing hinges, locks and handles on inside doors
  • Repairs to any furniture
  • Replacing broken glass
  • Draught proofing your doors and windows
  • Replacing washers on taps, plugs and plug chains on baths and sinks
  • Clearing airlocks in your pipes
  • Replacing cracked baths, sinks and toilets

Windows damaged in a riot

You are responsible for fixing broken windows. But, the Housing Executive may help if the police services says that the damage happened in a riot or because of vandalism. 

Help to deal with bad housing

Your home should not damage your health. 

Talk to the Housing Executive if you are worried about conditions in your home. Use the complaints process if you need to. 

The council might be able to help with serious problems in your home. It can force the Housing Executive to do repairs if it finds a statutory nuisance.

Contact our helpline if you need advice about repairs