DIY and decoratingDIY and re-decorating allows you to add personal touches to a property, helping you to turn our house into your home.

We currently invest around 1 million every year into improving and maintaining our properties. Make sure you avoid any expensive and potentially dangerous mistakes by following the recommendations in this guide and by always checking with us first before undertaking any home improvements.

Improvements and alterations:

Providing you are not a starter tenant you have the right to make improvements to your home. However you must ask for permission to do so. Please contact us and we will send you the relevant form. Permission is required for the following home improvements:

get approval

• Removing fire surrounds and hearths
• Fitting a gas fire or shower
• Laying a patio or putting up a shed
• Fitting a new kitchen or bathroom
• Creating a parking area in the front garden
• Erecting a TV aerial or satellite dish
• Removing internal walls
• Building a lean-to or conservatory
• Putting up fencing

You must not start work until you have our consent, please fill in this online form 

Fixtures and fittings

You are responsible for the ongoing maintenance and repair of all fixtures and fittings that you have installed.


You have the right to claim compensation at the end of your tenancy for certain improvements you have carried out with our written permission. You can get a list of improvements that are covered under this scheme from our Customer Services Team, in Rushden. Please ask for the Improvements Compensation Policy.

Please note that no compensation will be paid for work covered by a Government grant.

Dulux paint packs

If your home needs decorating when you move in or after some major works have been carried out you will be issued with a Dulux Paint Pack Voucher. This voucher entitles you to paint in a colour of your choice and painting accessories, which will all be delivered to your door.

All our tenants are entitled to a 25% Dulux discount, please contact us for more information on how this can be obtained.

Chimney Sweeping

If you have an open fire and use coal and wood regularly, the chimney can very quickly become clogged with soot. If this soot builds up there is a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

chimney sweepCarbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless gas and  in extreme cases it can kill.

Even a partial blockage in your chimney can cause this gas to seep into your home. It is easy to keep this from happening. We would recommend having your chimney swept at least once a year to prevent any danger to yourself and your family.

You can find chimney sweeps listed in the yellow pages or on the internet.

Helpful hints for DIY

• All bare wood should be primed before being painted
• Avoid applying woodchip wallpaper as it is very difficult to remove!
• Air vents are not to be covered over
• Do not paint the outer casing of your boiler as it is a fire hazard
• Do not paint any uPVC doors, sills or window frames
• Do not drill into windows or doors to hang blinds
• If you are nailing down carpets or floor boarding please take care you don’t hit any pipes
• Use rawlplugs when necessary