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Home > About us > Complain or give feedback

Complain or give feedback

If you feel we have done something well, got something wrong or provided a poor service, please tell us. If we have made a mistake, we want to have the opportunity to put things right.

You can give us your feedback online using the form below, by phone, email, social media, by letter or in person. You may also contact the independent Housing Ombudsman Service at any time to discuss your issue:
  • Visit: Housing Ombudsman Service
  • Email: info@housing-ombudsman.org.uk
  • Write to: Housing Ombudsman Service, PO Box 1484, Unit D, Preston PR2 0ET
  • Call: 0300 111 3000

    The Housing Ombudsman's phonelines are open Monday to Friday 9am - 5pm, except for Thursdays when they close at 3.30pm for staff training. Calls are recorded for training and monitoring purposes.

Our complaints procedure

If you make a complaint, we will:

  • Acknowledge your complaint.
  • Ask you at the start what outcome you are hoping for.
  • Inform you of what action we will take to bring your complaint to a satisfactory conclusion.
  • Resolve your complaint quickly and fairly. You will have the chance to discuss this in person with us and can bring a relative, friend or advisor if you wish.
  • Phone you once we have resolved your complaint to ask you how satisfied you are with how we handled it. This call is made by an independent organisation who has not previously been involved in the process, so you can speak freely and honestly.

On occasions we may not accept a complaint. If this is the case, we will explain why in writing, and you will have the right to bring the matter to the Housing Ombudsman.

Read our:

How we will respond to you

Feedback / service request

A customer service advisor will log and share your feedback with the relevant service manager as soon as you get in touch. If we have tried to resolve the issue and you remain unhappy, we will treat this as a stage 1 complaint.

Stage 1 complaints

We will inform you who has taken on your case and aim is to reach a satisfactory conclusion within 10 working days of you first raising the issue.

If new issues are raised during this stage of the investigation, the complaint handler will try to incorporate these (if relevant) into their investigation and subsequent response. However, if the new issue(s) will cause an unreasonable delay to the stage 1 response, it will be logged as a new complaint.

If you remain dissatisfied with the solutions offered at this stage, you have 5 working days in which to tell us you wish to escalate the complaint (stage 2).

Stage 2 complaint escalation

A senior manager will contact you to introduce themselves and have a further 20 working days in which to review and resolve your case. This review will include investigating all the previous steps taken to get to this stage. You will receive a written response with full details of the findings.

Unresolved issues

We work closely with the Housing Ombudsman Service, the official independent body set up by law to look at complaints about housing organisations that are registered with them. Their service is free, independent and impartial for our customers to access.

If you do not feel that we have resolved the issue satisfactorily, you may consider taking your complaint at any stage of your enquiry to the Housing Ombudsman Service

What we do with your feedback

We value all feedback and use this to help us improve our services.

The Housing Ombudsman’s Complaint Handling Code

The Housing Ombudsman’s Complaint Handling Code sets out requirements to allow us and other landlords, to respond to complaints effectively and fairly. The purpose of the Code is to enable landlords to resolve complaints raised by their customers quickly and to use the data and learning from complaints to drive service improvements.

The Code became statutory in April 2024, and the Ombudsman has a legal duty to monitor whether housing associations like Cottsway comply with the Code, regardless of whether the Ombudsman receives a complaint from customers about their landlord. 

What this means for landlords like Cottsway

Each year as part of the Code we are required to:

  • Carry out a self-assessment to ensure we are complying with the Code: we do this annually, or whenever we introduce major service changes that may affect customer’s satisfaction. This is then submitted to the Housing Ombudsman to review.
  • Produce an annual report: which summarises the complaints we’ve received, any compensation awarded and any service changes / improvements we have introduced as a result.

These findings are also presented to our Board each time they are reviewed.

Read our latest:

Make a complaint or give feedback

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We expect our staff to be treated with courtesy and respect.

We will not tolerate unreasonable behaviour.

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