Repairs help for owners

The responsibility to carry out and pay for repairs, maintenance and improvements lies with the owners of a property.

This topic is for home owners, and gives advice about meeting your obligations and getting repairs done well.

There is also a scheme for home owners and private tenants to get assistance with repairs called Care and Repair East Lothian.

  1. taking care of your building
  2. common repairs
  3. finding a reliable tradesman
  4. financial assistance
  5. Historic Scotland


1. Taking care of your building

To keep your building in a good state of repair it is important that you carry out regular inspections and maintenance. Poor building condition is likely to reduce the value of your property, lead to spiralling repair bills and could result in cold and damp living conditions.

By keeping on top of routine maintenance and spotting defects early, you can save yourself time and money and improve your living conditions.

Leaflets on specific repair issues or building elements are currently available on the following subjects:

Depending on the scale of the work that needs to be carried out to your property, you may need to involve a professional surveyor, who can specify what the best solution is, and supervise the work being carried out.

The key stages to organising any building repair are:

  • Specifying exactly what work needs to be done
  • Finding a reliable contractor
  • Agreeing a price, and
  • Getting an agreement in writing.

2. Common repairs

If you are organising repairs to a common element of your building (the responsibility for which is shared with other owners), there are certain steps you need to take to ensure any decisions regarding repairs are taken correctly. There is legislation in place to help owners to organise common repairs. For more information please see Common repairs.


3. Finding a reliable tradesman

East Lothian Council runs a Trusted Trader scheme to help consumers find reliable tradespeople.

Trusted Trader is a list of traders who have signed up to a Code of Practice with the council, taking some of the worry out of choosing someone to work in your home. Feedback is collected from customers and published on this website.

Trusted Traders


4. Financial assistance

The responsibility to carry out and fund repairs, maintenance and improvements should lie with the owner of the property. It is recognised that the cost of works can often be prohibitive to owners. We cannot give financial advice, but will provide information on sources of specialist advice on using savings, obtaining loans and equity release.

We do not offer any grants for the repair or improvement of private properties.


5. Historic Scotland grants

We manage a small number of grants that are provided by Historic Scotland for the preservation of historic buildings and buildings in specific conservation areas such as the Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme in Haddington town centre.

Our Planning and Projects Team can provide more information about grants for owners carrying out repairs or maintenance to a building which is listed or is within one of East Lothian's priority conservation areas.