Communal areas in council housing

Communal areas are those parts of a house, block of flats, street or estate which tenants have a right to use in common with other tenants and for which a landlord is responsible.

These include:

  • communal hallways
  • the roof and gutters on a block of flats
  • shared stairways, balconies and access paths
  • gardens or yards, where each property doesn't have its "own" garden or yard, usually around flats and some bungalows

Stairways and halls

If you have communal, or shared, halls and stairs to your home, you're responsible, together with all the other residents, for cleaning these areas. We suggest that you agree who cleans what with your neighbours.

Shared halls and stairs are part of your fire escape route; please keep them free from obstructions and don't keep or store combustible items (for example, furniture, rugs, wall-hangings), in these areas.

Communal gardens

We maintain the grass and gardens in communal areas. The grass should be cut every two weeks, unless it's too wet. However, we don't remove grass clippings because this would be very costly.

Contact us

If something needs repairing in a communal area, report it in the usual way during office hours by either emailing us at or calling 01423 500600. If the problem happens outside office hours and you think it needs immediate attention because it's an emergency, contact the emergency team on 01423 556300.