Making changes to your property
We all want our house to feel like a home and sometimes that means putting our own stamp on things.

Take a look below at some frequently asked questions around making changes to your property.

Can I make changes to my home?

In most cases we’ll be happy for you to paint, decorate and do some minor DIY in your home. But for more substantial works, for example, a new kitchen or bathroom, you'll need to check with us first before you start any work. Your tenancy agreement can give you an idea of whether home improvements are usually allowed in your property.

Once you contact us and have asked for our permission, we’ll come back to you within two weeks, sometimes sooner. If we think we’ll need a little longer to assess your application and make a decision then we’ll send an interim reply during that time. The quickest way to ask for permission is by completing our online form.

Please don’t start any work on your home until we’ve said yes. If you do, you might put your tenancy at risk. If we give permission, we will usually expect any works to be completed within 12 weeks - Please talk to us if you think the work might take longer. The work may be subject to an inspection after completion to ensure the work is of satisfactory standard.

If we say no, we’ll always give a reason why. If you’re unhappy with our decision you’ll have the opportunity to appeal.

Please note, we don’t normally allow changes to be made in communal (shared) areas.

What sort of improvements can I make to my home?

This depends on your tenancy and the type of home you live in, so please contact us to check.

Even if you just want to make a small improvement to your home, we need to make sure there are no legal reasons why it can’t be made and that none of your neighbours will be affected by the work. For example, something as simple as swapping your carpet to hardwood floors could create a noise problem for your neighbours. We’ll also check whether the work might cause any safety concerns.

If you’d like to make a change that involves electrics or plumbing (for example, installing an electric shower) you’ll need to use a certified contractor once we have given you permission to make the improvement. Where needed, you’ll also have to make sure you have the right planning permission for any improvements, which is usually done through the planning department of your local authority.

Remember to always ask our permission before making any changes to your home, and please contact us if you have any questions.

Do aids and adaptations count as a home improvement?

Aids and adaptations are different to home improvements. If you have a disability or health issue that affects your independence, aids and adaptations can help you live in your home easily and safely.

Find out more about aids and adaptations.

Who pays for home improvements?

You’ll need to pay for any home improvements you’d like to make - this includes the cost of tools, materials or any contractors you hire to carry out the work. Remember it’ll also be up to you to look after any new appliances, fixtures or fittings that you install.

There may be some circumstances where Scottish Secure Tenants and Scottish Short Secure Tenants qualify for compensation for these improvements. to find out more, please read our right to repair scheme information.

Bear in mind that we do have a planned maintenance programme, which means we will pay to routinely upgrade things like kitchens and bathrooms. There are usually a number of years between upgrades, but we’ll always let you know if there’s any changes due to be made to your home soon