Spring and summer are the time for repairs, including in the entrances of residential buildings. What should be repaired and what should residents do if repairs are not supposed to be carried out, said Olga Daineko, an expert at the Center for Financial Literacy NIFI of the Ministry of Finance.
After the end of the heating season, the management company (MC) must conduct a scheduled inspection of the building to determine what needs to be repaired or replaced, the expert says. Such an inspection is carried out without special requests or reminders from the residents. The management company must examine the condition of the building as a whole, including structures, engineering equipment and external landscaping.
Then an inspection report is drawn up, a schedule for preparing the house for next winter, a decision is made on how much and when to carry out work.
At the same time, the management companies often try to convince residents that repairing the entrance is not their responsibility and is possible only at the expense of apartment owners, Daineko notes. However, the maintenance of the entrance is included in the mandatory list of works that must be performed by service organizations. And the bill for such work is monthly billed to homeowners in receipts for payment in the column “maintenance of the housing stock.” That is, these works have already been advanced by homeowners, the expert emphasizes.
In addition, the management company is obliged to carry out repairs at the entrance every 3-5 years (depending on the type of building and physical deterioration). Repairs can be carried out more often, but only at the request of the owners, drawn up by the minutes of the general meeting.
It happens that the management company refuses to make repairs, referring to the absence of such an obligation in the apartment building management agreement concluded with the owner. Such a refusal is unlawful, notes Daineko, since the Criminal Code is obliged to carry out such work, regardless of whether there are conditions for this in the contract or not.
To achieve the current repair of the entrance, you must first send a claim to the Criminal Code. Many people believe that a claim must be filed by all owners in the form of a collective appeal, but this is not so. Maintenance of housing is a service paid for by each of the owners, and in case of failure to provide such a service or provision of a service of inadequate quality, each of the owners has the right to demand that it be received in the required amount independently. A collective complaint is often taken more seriously, but several individual complaints against the Criminal Code are no worse. You can file a claim in the traditional ways: by mail with a list of attachments or in person during a visit to the Criminal Code, having received a mark of delivery on the second copy. And you can do this without leaving your home – through the GIS housing and communal services platform (entrance to the platform – through the account of the public services portal). The response time to an appeal through the GIS housing and communal services is 30 calendar days.
If there has been no repair at the entrance for more than five years, at the same time as filing a claim with the Criminal Code, you can send a complaint to the housing inspectorate. This can be done through the public services portal. The complaint must indicate the need to check the activities of the Criminal Code. When sending a claim or complaint electronically, you can attach an agreement with the Criminal Code, photographs of the entrance and other additional documents to the message. When writing a complaint about the provision of services of inadequate quality, it is better to first list the defects that are associated with the preparation of the building for the next winter, and only then those that relate to cosmetic defects. This will allow faster results, as preparation for winter is a matter of safety and well-being of the living environment. Broken glass, cracked window frames, through cracks to the street, sealing around the perimeter of the front door, stairs and railings, crumbling plaster on the ceiling are more likely to be repaired by the management company, since this threatens the safety of residents and can cause enormous heat losses in the cold season. It will be difficult for the managing organization to challenge the need for such work, including in court. In addition, the housing inspectorate, as well as the administration of the municipality, in such a situation, in most cases, will be on the side of the residents.
When it was possible to get repairs carried out from the management company, the owners need to select an initiative group from among the tenants, who will be entrusted with receiving a work plan from the management company and verifying their implementation. Often the result differs from the original plan both in terms of scope of work and quality. Therefore, it is important to regularly monitor the progress of work, fix their stages in the photo and video. This will help, if necessary, to prove that the technological process was violated, not the materials indicated in the estimate were used, which led to unsatisfactory quality. If the workers do not take out construction waste, do not clean up after the completion of the repair, are regularly absent from the work site, you need to file a complaint with the Criminal Code again. It takes time, effort and perseverance, but in the coming years it will allow you to live in a more comfortable and safe house.
The last instances in the struggle for the repaired entrance are the court and the prosecutor’s office. In court, it is possible to achieve compulsion of the Criminal Code to carry out repairs, and in the prosecutor’s office – to call for liability for failure to comply with a court decision and instructions of the State Housing Inspectorate.