We know that sometimes, dealing with public housing maintenance issues can be frustrating, difficult, and downright confusing. In this article, we’ve answered some common questions and stepped through what happens when, to put that confusion to rest.
What is a public housing maintenance issue?
Public housing properties, like all properties, are likely to go through normal wear and tear or damage that occurs over time. The Department of Families, Fairness and Housing is responsible for maintaining your public housing property to a safe and efficient standard.
This can include repairing things like broken windows or doors, leaking taps, gas leaks, electrical faults, damaged or insufficient fencing, a breakdown of energy or water supplies, lift maintenance, or other issues.
Some maintenance issues, though, fall under the responsibility of you as the public housing tenant. This includes things like replacing light bulbs or smoke alarm batteries, fixing or replacing your personal items, and general cleaning and garden maintenance.
If you need support to carry out any of these responsibilities, you can contact your local housing office.
What do I do if my public housing property has a maintenance issue?
The Maintenance Call Centre is available to discuss any public housing maintenance issues you may have, and organise to get them repaired.
Your Housing Officer might refer to the ‘Housing Call Centre’, or you might also hear them say ‘Maintenance Call Centre’. The terms are often used interchangeably.
What happens when I call the Maintenance Call Centre?
When you contact the Maintenance Call Centre, they will request your full name, the address of your public housing property, information about your maintenance issue, as well as your best contact number.
They will then organise for a professional contractor to visit your public housing property to complete the repairs. They will provide you with a reference number, and a timeframe of how soon you can expect the contractor to visit your property.
When the contractor visits your property, they will need to be able to safely access the area where the repairs are needed.
If you are not home when the contractor visits you, they will leave a card to notify you that they were there. You will need to ring the phone number provided on the card, tell them your reference number, and rearrange a time that suits you for the contractor to visit you again.
If you are not home when the contractor visits your home a second time, your maintenance request will be cancelled, and you will need to ring the Maintenance Call Centre again.
How long will it take to have my public housing maintenance issue fixed?
When you contact the Maintenance Call Centre to discuss your housing maintenance issue, your repairs will be classified as either urgent, priority, or non-urgent.
The category your housing maintenance issue falls into will impact the timeframe that your repairs will be completed.
- Urgent repairs should be attended to by a contractor within 24 hours of you contacting the Maintenance Call Centre with your maintenance issue.
- Priority repairs should be attended to by a contractor within seven days of you contacting the Maintenance Call Centre with your maintenance issue.
- Non-urgent repairs should be attended to by a contractor within 14 days of you contacting the Maintenance Call Centre with your maintenance issue.
I waited at home, but the contractor never showed up. Now what?
As mentioned, when you contact the Maintenance Call Centre with your issue, they will provide you with a timeframe of when you can expect a visit from a contractor, depending on the urgency required.
If, however, you do not receive a visit within the timeframe that was advised to you, you will need to contact the Maintenance Call Centre to notify them.
The Maintenance Call Centre has procedural steps in place that they will take to escalate jobs when this happens. You may be required to contact he Maintenance Call Centre more than once to notify them that you have not yet received a visit from a contractor after you were advised you would.
Do I have to pay for maintenance and repairs myself?
No. You do not need to pay for the cost of repairs if they have been caused by an accident or fair wear and tear.
If you are unsure whether this means you are responsible for paying for your housing maintenance costs, contact the Maintenance Call Centre on 13 11 72 and they will be able to discuss this with you.
Who can help me more with public housing maintenance issues?
If you require further assistance on your public housing maintenance issue, you can call us for free on 1800 015 510.
We are available Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm (excluding public holidays) to give you confidential and free advice and assistance.
If you prefer to get in touch online, you can do so here.