Housing Complaints & Compliments
To raise a formal complaint fill in the online complaints form
If you've experienced help or had especially good service, you can compliment our staff. Just fill in the form and let us know.
The City Council aims to provide good-quality, cost effective services, but recognises that, at times, things can go wrong. If they do, we need to know so we can put them right and learn from them.
Definition of a complaint -An expression of dissatisfaction about the quality of service, however made, about the standard of service, actions or lack of action by Winchester City Council, its employees, or contractors, affecting an individual resident or group of residents
Below we explain the procedures available to you if you consider that we have failed:
- to provide a service
- to be courteous
- in our standard of work
- in our administration of procedures
- to adhere to our rules or regulations
- to provide you with correct information
- to treat you fairly and promptly
What should I do if I am unhappy with one of your services?
The best way to sort out a problem is by raising the issue with the person you have been dealing with or their immediate line manager. This is called local resolution. At this stage we think those people who deliver the service are best placed to resolve an issue.
We can usually sort out mistakes and misunderstandings quickly and informally at this stage.
If you have been unable to resolve your complaint at the informal stage or unsuccessfully via the standard repairs feedback process then you can move to the next stage as set out below:
- To raise a formal complaint please fill in the online complaints form and you will be given a reference number for your complaint.
- You can also request a printed copy of the complaints form from our Customer Service Center by telephone on 01962 840 222.
- Directly to an officer of the council
- Via social media - Facebook and Twitter
- In writing to Winchester City Council, Colebrook Street, Winchester, Hants, SO23 9LJ
We will acknowledge your complaint within five working days, then investigate and respond within ten working days.
- If you feel that your complaint has not been resolved at stage one, you can contact the Chief Executive Office at email@example.com with the reference number you were given at stage one. You will need to set out why you are not satisfied and what you expect from a further review. You will receive a response within ten working days.
If you have been through all stages of our complaints procedure and feel your complaint has still not been resolved, you can ask the Housing Ombudsman to review your complaint. Please see further information and contact details for each of these free services below.
As soon as court action is indicated, threatened or initiated, the council will suspend its response to a complaint until a legal process commenced or a decision is determined.
The Housing Ombudsman makes the final decision on disputes between residents and member landlords. The Ombudsman decisions are independent, impartial and fair. They also support effective landlord-tenant dispute resolution by others, including landlords themselves, and promote positive change in the housing sector.
The service is free to the 4.7 million households eligible to use it.
The Housing Ombudsman Service aim’s to provide a fair and effective way of dealing with complaints against member landlords from their tenants. The service, will try to remedy the situation by either asking the landlord to change their way of working or offering financial redress.
If you have been through all stages of the complaints procedure and remain dissatisfied with the response or at any stage you feel we have not handled your complaint in line with our policy, you can ask the Housing Ombudsman and they may be able to investigate how we dealt with the matter.
The contact details for the Housing Ombudsman Service are:
- Online complaint form:
- Phone: 0300 111 3000
- Postal address: Housing Ombudsman Service, PO Box 152, Liverpool L33 7WQ
In July 2020, the Housing Ombudsman published a new Complaint Handling code which came into effect July 2020. The Housing Ombudsman provides more information on their website about the new Complaint Handling Code which you can access here.
Our Resident Complaints Panel has spent time with us, and has given us a clear steer on what needs to change. As a result, we believe we’re moving in the right direction and will continue to improve our complaints response. The Ombudsman Complaint Handling Code Self-assessment can be viewed here
The Housing Ombudsman website also contains a useful series of short videos on making a complaint about council housing: Videos on making a complaint
How we are performing
We aim to offer good customer experience and good standard of service at all times. If you have recently made a complaint to the Housing Team we would like to know about your experience. As part of our commitment to continuous improvement, we ask our customers to complete a short survey, to advise if the handling of their complaint was completed to their satisfaction to help us to improve us services.
Learning from complaints is important to us, click here (pdf, 273kb)for 2021/22 on how we have changed the delivery of a service because of a complaint.
Complaints performance for 2021/22 can be found here (pdf, 386kb)
We do get compliments too, click here (pdf, 301kb) for how may we recieved during 2021/22 and a snap shot of what was said.
If you would like to be involved in working with the council to improve services and learn from complaints contact Tenant Involvement to find out the different ways you can do this. email TInvolvement@winchester.gov.uk or phone the Freephone number 0800 716 987.’
Make Things Right: Social housing complaints campaign
The ‘Make Things Right’ campaign aims to ensure more social housing residents who need support know how to make a complaint.
It is based on the idea that everyone deserves a home that is safe, secure and well maintained, and anything less is unacceptable. And if a resident has reported an issue and it hasn’t been fixed, it’s now easier to make things right.
The campaign sets out the steps of the complaints process that residents can take if they are unhappy with the service from their social housing provider. Click here to visit the webiste