TORC Top Tips For Tenants: Unauthorised Adaptions

As the annual house inspections are beginning next month, it’s a good time to contact your Housing Services Coordinator to discuss any adaptions that you have made to your property without written consent. The TORC Top Tip for May advises residents of the process of retrospective adaption requests.

Property Adaptions

Before you carry out any work to your home you should first check with your Housing Services Coordinator as you may require written authorization. You must obtain TORC’s written consent if you are planning to carry out alterations or make any additions to the premises. This includes to the electrical and plumbing systems and fixtures such as: sheds, greenhouses, satellite dishes, new fireplaces, immersion heaters and sink units or the exterior of the premises. You should not make any alterations to your property without requesting TORC’s approval first. This is clearly stated in your Tenancy Agreement and your Tenant Handbook.

Tenancy Agreement – Section D – Maintenance/Alterations To Dwelling.
• Clauses – 31, 32 & 34 (Main Clauses in Tenancy Agreement).

TORC Tenant Handbook – Pages 12, 24 & 25.
• Section 2 – Tenancy Agreement – Matters Which Require Written Permission (Page 12).
• Section 4 – Repairs & Maintenance – Alterations & Home Improvements (Page 24).
• Section 4 – Repairs & Maintenance – Aids & Adaptations (Page 25).

Minimum Standards

It is important to request approval prior to an adaption as there are minimum conditions that must be adhered to in order for Adaption Request to be considered by the Facilities Management team. Authorisation cannot be provided for any alterations to the structure of the property unless it has been granted based on minimum conditions (Section 4 – Repairs & Maintenance – Alterations & Home Improvements (Page 24). For example:

  • All works must be carried out by a qualified tradesperson.
  • Works must be compliant with planning and building regulations (evidence will be required as appropriate)
  • The improvement does not in any way breach ‘house rules’ in apartment building

Upon receipt of an Adaption Request Form the Facilities Management Dept. have up to 28 Days to respond to tenants’ request.

What Should You Do If You Have Made an Unauthorised Adaption?

  1. Contact TORC by phone or email to advise what works were carried out and to request a Retrospective Adaption Request Form to be issued.
  2. If there is an immediate health and safety concern, Facilities Management may require immediate access to the property to assess the works.
  3. Tenants should submit a completed Retrospective Adaption Request form and include photos of the works and a diagram/sketch if applicable. Make sure to sign and date the form.
  4. Facilities Management will review the retrospective adaption request and will make a decision to approve or refuse the request. Depending on the type of works carried out, a tenant may be requested to submit additional information before a request is fully considered by the FM team e.g. Fire Engineers report, Provision of Certificates of compliance (Electrical, Plumbing etc..)
  5. If a Retrospective Adaption Request is REFUSED, a tenant may be required to remove all works or make further alterations to the works to comply with local authority policy or health and safety requirements. The cost of any remedial works will be borne by the tenant.

Tips for Completing the Adaption Form

  1. Fill the form with as much detail as available.
  2. Provide photos/pictures of the works completed
  3. Submit a sketch/diagram of the works if required with measurements (L x W x H if relevant)
  4. Sign and date the form.

Disability Adaptions

There is a difference between submitting a general Adaption Request Form and an ‘Aids & Adaption Request Form’ (Disability Adaption to Stock Form). TORC Facilities Management makes a decision on whether to approve or deny an Adaption Request to a TORC property.

When an ‘Aids & Adaption Request Form is submitted to TORC, the Tenancy Management team then submit this DAS/DPG Application Form to the Local Authority on behalf of the tenant for review. The Local Authority make a decision on whether to approve or deny request. They then contact the tenant directly with the outcome of their application.


infographic on TORC unauthorised adaptions