Who we are

Complaints procedure

At Waltham Forest Housing there are two stages to our complaints procedure:

Stage one – the relevant service area within Waltham Forest Housing will reply to your complaint, if possible, within 10 working days. If it is not possible to respond fully to your complaint within 10 working days [i.e. because we need some further information that is not available] we will write to you and explain why. We will also tell you when we will be able to respond to your complaint.

You will receive a letter acknowledging your complaint. This will tell you the name of the person who is dealing with your complaint, their contact details and the date by which you will receive a response.

Stage two – if you are not happy with the response received from Waltham Forest Housing at stage one, you have the opportunity to complain further to the Chief Executive of the London Borough of Waltham Forest (the Council) who will carry out an independent review of the actions taken by Waltham Forest Housing. The Council’s Corporate Complaints Team will acknowledge your request within five days and your complaint will be reviewed within 28 calendar days.

If you are still not happy following Stage Two, you will be advised whether you should escalate your complaint to either the Housing Ombudsman or the Local Government Ombudsman.

The Local Government Ombudsman and Housing Ombudsman

Since April 2013 the Housing Ombudsman will deal with all complaints about social housing. Tenants of councils and ALMOs previously had the right to refer complaints about housing to the Local Government Ombudsman.

The Housing Ombudsman will continue to investigate complaints against housing associations and in addition, will investigate complaints about a local authority’s landlord function. This means that complaints about a local authority’s relationship as landlord to its tenants or leaseholders will be considered by the Housing Ombudsman rather than the Local Government Ombudsman.

The Local Government Ombudsman will continue to consider complaints about local authorities’ wider activities, for example in discharging their statutory duties in homelessness. There are areas where there may appear to be some over-lap between the jurisdiction of the two Ombudsmen. The following guide has been developed to help clarify which Ombudsman may consider various categories of complaint.

Please see the following links for more information.


How can I get help making my complaint

Your local Councillor or Member of Parliament can help you make a complaint or complain on your behalf. Their details can be obtained from the Council on 020 8496 3000 or Council website. You may also contact the Complaints and Service Improvement Team on 020 8496 4197 and they will be happy to assist.

Alternatively, you can:

Contact or visit your local Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB)

Telephone: 0844 826 9696 or visit the CAB website or the CAB Advice Guide website

Seek help from a local Law Centre

Telephone:0845 345 4345 or visit the Community Legal Advice website.

Seek help from a local solicitor

Visit the Law Society’s website (to help you find a local solicitor).

Putting it Right

To put things right if we’ve made a mistake, these are the things that we will do:

  • Apologise
  • Arrange for work or repairs to be done as soon as possible
  • Speed up a decision that has taken too long
  • Reconsider facts, if circumstances have changed
  • Learn from our mistakes and update training to staff.
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