At Hastoe we aim to deliver excellent services to our customers, but we recognise that sometimes things go wrong. When this happens we want to put things right and prevent it from happening again. We value feedback from customers and will use it to improve our services.
We want to make sure that customers can a raise complaint easily and our aim is to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.
What is a complaint?
We will investigate complaints about any service provided by Hastoe or on our behalf by our contractors. Some areas of customer dissatisfaction fall outside the scope of our complaints policy and we will not investigate them as a complaint. These include:
- A first request for service, such as a repair.
- Defects to new properties.
- Challenges to service charges or rent setting, although we will investigate complaints about the services these charges pay for such as cleaning or grass cutting.
- Neighbour disputes or antisocial behaviour, unless the complaint is in relation to how Hastoe has managed the issue.
- Complaints relating to services where the policy for the area of service has been applied correctly.
- In situations where legal action has been commenced either by Hastoe or against Hastoe.
- Situations where a claim is being dealt with by Hastoe’s insurers.
- Complaints about data breaches.
We manage issues regarding the above areas differently. Please contact us if you wish to discuss any of these issues.
Making a complaint
We want to make it as easy as possible for you to raise a complaint. You can do so by:
- Telephone or text message
- Face to face
- Our online complaints form or the MyHastoe portal
- In writing by letter or email
- Through a third party such as an MP, councillor, advocate, friend or family member. The complainant will need to give permission in most circumstances.
It is important to contact us with your complaint as soon as possible after the issue arises, as the more time that passes the harder it is for us to effectively investigate and resolve the issue. For this reason, we do not usually investigate complaints about issues that happened more than six months ago.
How we deal with complaints
We hope we can resolve the majority of issues informally and in most circumstances this is what we will do. If you remain unhappy then we will investigate your issue as a formal complaint.
Our formal complaints process has two stages.
Your complaint will be acknowledged in two working days and will be assigned to a manager responsible for the area of service you are complaining about.
You will be contacted by the investigating manager, normally by telephone, to discuss your complaint in more detail. You will be asked to provide specific details of your complaint and how you would like us to resolve the issue. We need this information so that we are clear on all areas of your complaint, especially if it’s in relation to more than one issue or the complaint is complex. We also need to understand what you would like as an outcome of your complaint so that we can advise you about what we are able to do to resolve the issue.
We aim to investigate your complaint and provide you with a full written response within 14 days. The investigating manager will contact you if they require more time to undertake the investigation. This is sometimes necessary when the issues are complex or involve third parties.
The majority of our formal complaints are resolved at this first stage. However, if you remain unhappy you can request that your complaint is reviewed. This is the second stage of our complaints process.
If you remain unhappy with the response you received at stage 1 you must notify us within 21 days of our response and we will review your complaint .You will need to advise us what it is you remain unhappy with and what you would like as an outcome to your complaint.
We will formally acknowledge the review of your complaint within 2 working days. We will arrange for a Director at Hastoe to review the way in which your complaint was handled at stage 1. They will also review the issues raised and investigated at stage 1 that you remain dissatisfied with. We will not investigate any new issues at this stage.
The Director managing the complaint will contact you, normally by telephone, to understand why you remain dissatisfied and what you would like as an outcome. If you do not wish to discuss the complaint any further the Director will undertake a review based on the information you have previously supplied.
We aim to undertake the review and provide a full written response within 21 days. If the review is likely to take longer, we will contact you to advise on what the timescale for a response will be. This may be necessary if the issues are complex or involve third parties.
This is the end of Hastoe’s own complaints process, but if you remain dissatisfied with the response at stage 2 you can ask for a ‘Designated Person’ to review your case.
Designated Person & Housing Ombudsman Service
If you remain unhappy at the end of Hastoe’s complaints process you have the right to have your case reviewed by a Designated Person who will decide whether the matter should be referred to the Housing Ombudsman. If you would like this to happen you will need to ask your MP or local councillor to act as your Designated Person and review your complaint.
If you do not want to refer your complaint to the Designated Person you are entitled to contact the Housing Ombudsman Service directly after eight weeks following the end of Hastoe’s review process.
The Housing Ombudsman Service can be contacted:
- Online: www.housing-ombudsman.org.uk
- By phone: 0300 111 3000
- In writing to: Housing Ombudsman Service, PO Box 152, Liverpool, L33 7WQ