Living in a flat, sheltered housing or extra care scheme

We have different types of flat across Sunderland. This information is for flats in buildings with communal entrances and hallways.

Security and safety

Support and care

Scheme managers are onsite Monday to Friday in all sheltered housing schemes and extra care schemes.

Onsite care teams in extra care schemes respond to your calls 24 hours a day.

If you live in a sheltered housing or extra care scheme, your flat is connected to our Concierge Service. This service is available 24 hours a day so there is always someone available to help if you need it.

If you live in a sheltered housing or extra care scheme and would like more support, Sunderland Care and Support provide Sunderland Telecare’s 24-hour service. There is a cost for this service and your Scheme Manager can help you to request it.

Secure door entry systems

All flats in buildings with communal entrances have secure door entry systems you open with a key or fob. They may also have CCTV as part of the entry system.

For your security and your neighbours’ security:

  • close the door securely when you enter or leave
  • keep your key or fob safe, you will need to pay to replace it


  • give your key or fob to someone else
  • let someone in who you do not know or are not expecting
  • prop open the doors

The door entry systems link to our Concierge Service if you live in City Green or any building that has an intercom system.

Intercom system

The intercom is part of your secure door entry system, and it allows us to call you or send you send important messages. This could be about planned works that we are doing in their building.

The system also allows you to call our Concierge Service.

This buildings with intercoms are:

  • Benedict Court
  • Knightswood
  • Turnbull House
  • all high-rise buildings except City Green and River Quarter
  • all sheltered housing and extra care schemes

The intercom system in Cherry Tree Gardens is different from the others and only allows us to call you.


Every lift has CCTV cameras and an emergency button in case it breaks down. You can report a repair for a lift that is not working property.

Windows and balconies

To keep you, your family and your neighbours safe, never:

  • drop or throw things off your balcony
  • climb over your balcony railing
  • hang things over your balcony railing
  • drop or throw things out of your windows
  • lean or climb out your windows
  • adjust or remove window restrictors or other safety devices
  • leave windows open when it is windy

If you have a window that needs to be repaired, report it at once and keep the window closed until we repair it.

Find out more about preventing fires on your balcony.

Fire safety

More information about fire safety.


It is against the law to smoke in any indoor communal areas, landings, hallways, stairs, corridors and lifts.


All our high-rise buildings, low-rise buildings, sheltered housing and extra care schemes have a noticeboard with essential information for you. It includes:

  • the cleaning schedule for the building’s communal areas
  • numbers to call to keep yourself safe, including reporting a carbon monoxide emergency or antisocial behaviour
  • fire safety advice and what to do if there is a fire in your flat or building
  • your Neighbourhood Co-ordinator's name and contact details

Communal areas

Janitors or cleaning contractors clean communal areas.

All tenants and leaseholders must keep communal areas clear and tidy. You must not leave items like mobility scooters, bicycles and furniture in communal areas.

If they do not block fire exits, communal areas can have:

  • natural plants in a pot or vase
  • non-slip, rubber-backed, edged and trimmed doormats

Scheme managers

Every scheme has a Scheme Manager who will:

  • speak with you to make sure you have the support you need
  • give advice and support about your tenancy
  • refer you to other services for financial advice
  • help you to report a repair
  • maintain the health and safety and security of the building
  • help you to access other services and agencies to support you in your home

Your Scheme Manager will not:

  • help you with medicine
  • repair something in your home
  • wash, clean or shop for you

With your permission, they may access your flat in an emergency.

Contact details for all scheme managers.


Our janitors make sure communal and outside areas are clean, safe and secure including:

  • bin chutes and bin areas
  • floors
  • garden areas
  • landings
  • lifts
  • stairwells
  • windows

They do this for:

  • all 25 high-rise buildings
  • Benedict Court
  • 32 to 105 Arklecrag

When needed, janitors report repairs, suspicious incidents or observations.

Contact details for all janitor teams.