East Lothian Council

Repairs and Improvement in Council Housing

Reporting repairs and getting them done

This topic is for tenants of Council homes that need repair. For information on what will happen if we need to get into your home to carry our emergency repairs that you have not reported, please go to our gaining access in an emergency page. If you are a Housing Association tenant, go to our help for housing association tenants page.  

Reporting a Repair

If you require any repairs to your East Lothian council house, get in touch with our Contact Centre on 01875 824311, or by emailing housingrepairs@eastlothian.gov.uk You can call the Contact Centre concerning anything to do with repairs, including:

  • requesting a repair
  • asking about the progress of a repair
  • seeking advice about repairs to your council house

The Contact Centre will be able to tell you:

  • whether we can order your repair using the information you provided,
  • or if we need to come and inspect the problem first
  • when the job or inspection should be completed


Repairs will be dealt with in order of priority. Appointments for repairs will be made as soon as possible but there may be delays (for example, if we have to order materials). We will give you a timescale for the repair that we believe we can meet. For more information please read this leaflet.

Emergency Contacts

Emergency repairs are available to all our tenants 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Emergency repairs will be done outwith working hours when the fault:

  • poses a serious risk to health and safety
  • poses a serious risk to the structure of the property
  • results in the property being insecure

In the event of an emergency Council tenants can call our Contact Centre on 01875 612818, at any time of the day or night. Please note however that this number is for emergencies only.

Gas leaks

If you suspect that there is a gas leak in your property, report it immediately to the National Gas Emergency Service on 0800 111 999. You must report any gas leaks to us as well.

Right to repair

The right to repair scheme gives qualifying tenants the right to have small emergency or urgent repairs done quickly. The landlord (Council or housing association) is responsible for making sure that such work is completed on time, and you can claim compensation if the landlord fails to meet these standards. To qualify for the right to repair scheme, the repair must meet the following criteria:

1 day to complete:

  • Blocked flue to open fire or boiler
  • Blocked or leaking foul drains, soil stacks, or toilet pans (where there is no other toilet in the house)
  • Blocked sink, bath or basin
  • Loss of electrical power
  • Unsafe power or lighting socket or electrical fitting
  • Unsecured external window, door or lock
  • Leaks or flooding from water or heating pipes, tanks or cisterns
  • Loss or partial loss of gas supply
  • Loss or partial loss of space or water heating (where no alternative heating is available)
  • Toilet not flushing (where there is no other toilet in the house)
  • Loss of water supply.

3 days to complete

  • Partial loss of electrical power
  • Partial loss of water supply
  • Loose or detached banister or handrail
  • Unsafe timber flooring or stair treads.

7 days to complete

  • Mechanical extractor fan not working (this applies only to an internal kitchen or bathroom without a window or other form of ventilation).

The timescales for the right to repair scheme are calculated from the first working day after the repair is reported until the date it is completed. If the repair needs to be inspected first, the timescale runs from the next working day until work is completed. If you re-report a repair, the process and timescale calculation will start again. Compensation will only apply once the process has restarted for the same repair. A Government leaflet gives more information about this right.

If you want to know more about your housing options, click on the link or call 01620 827827 and ask for your Local Housing Office - they will be happy to help

East Lothian Council, John Muir House Brewery Park Haddington East Lothian EH41 3HA.