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Keeping communal areas clear and clutter free

09 June 2021

We have a responsibility for the area where you live, and this includes making sure the communal areas for your home (if you have them) meets fire and safety requirements. Items stored or left in communal areas, which are shared spaces, are a hazard as they can prevent people from leaving the building safely in the event of a fire. It’s important we all do what we can to prevent hazards which is why we have a zero-tolerance approach to items left in communal areas. This means we will remove and throw away any items we find in these spaces without notice.

We want to keep you and your neighbours safe and can only do this with your help. The Fire Brigade outlines that storing belongings in these shared spaces can pose a real risk to everyone’s safety as it could stop you escaping a building and prevent the fire fighters from doing their job in an emergency.

What you can do as a resident

If, as part of your home, you have access to communal areas, your tenancy agreement or lease will state that you should not store items in communal areas and that we will treat any items left as a breach of your tenancy or lease. Communal areas include stairways, lifts, landings, hallways, and any other spaces that you share with other residents. It also includes service or meter cupboards in your building. If you currently have items, including but not limited to prams, bicycles, plants, door mats, toys, furniture, or other household items, stored or left in these spaces, please remove them immediately.

What we will do as the landlord

If we find any items in communal areas, we will remove them and throw them away which means you will no longer have access to them. We do not have the storage space to hold onto items for you. When we do this, we will place a notice, called a TORT notice, in your communal area to let you know that we removed the item. Please also be mindful that uninvited visitors may be able to access these communal areas and use or take items they find. The best way to look after your possessions is to keep them inside your home.

Let’s work together to keep you, your family and neighbours safe. We’ll ensure we follow through with our zero-tolerance approach to items we find in communal areas and you can help us by making sure you do not leave items in communal areas, even if it’s just temporarily.