CASE STUDY

Communication failing

Dispute over the landlord’s handling of reports of anti-social behaviour and time taken to complete repairs resolved through early resolution

Mr H complained that, although the landlord had taken some action in response to his reports of anti-social behaviour from his upstairs neighbour, the reported behaviour did not stop. He considered that he had not been kept up-to-date in the anti-social behaviour case.

Mr H had also reported a leak from the property above and was dissatisfied with the time taken by the landlord to complete repairs, as well as with its offer to contribute £50 towards the cost of redecoration.

Having completed the landlord’s complaints procedure, Mr H brought his complaint to the Ombudsman. He had, by this time, accepted the landlord’s offer to move to an alternative property.

Outcome:

We resolved this dispute by asking the landlord to consider how it had communicated with Mr H. We encouraged it to make it clear to Mr H that it was interested in listening to him, and that it wanted to understand his experience of its service. The landlord initially suggested meeting with Mr H but adapted its approach when he said that he would rather not discuss the matter in person.

The landlord considered an impact statement from Mr H and responded with a letter expressing regret at his experience of its service. It found that this had included updates not being provided in the anti-social behaviour case.

The landlord also offered Mr H £250 as a ‘gesture of goodwill’ in recognition of Mr H’s experiences, and a senior manager offered to meet with Mr H in future if he changed his mind about meeting in person. In Mr H’s opinion, and in our opinion, the action taken by the landlord resolved the complaint.