The Combined Accommodation Assessment System explained
As part of Housing and Accommodation month we take a look at the Combined Accommodation Assessment System (CAAS).
Here at the Families Federation we are often asked about the CAAS process. In this item we share with you some useful information on how best to navigate the procedures.
What is the Combined Accommodation Assessment System?
CAAS in simple terms is accommodation banding and charges. Of all the accommodation issues we receive in to the families Federation, CAAS is the least understood, possibly because of its complexity and methodology. Here we outline the basics:
- It is the method by which your monthly rental charges for your property is determined.
- The CAAS Band is an indication of the Decent Homes Standard of that property based on the condition, the scale (size and so on) and the Location (facilities such as transport, broadband, hospitals etc).
- It excludes Contribution in-lieu of Council Tax charges.
- On moving in to your SFA, Surplus SFA or Substitute SFA you should ensure that you ask the Amey Accommodation Officer (or the Mears Agent, for SSFA) for the CAAS Banding letter for that property.
- You then have 28 days to raise a CAAS Challenge if there are any significant points that you are dissatisfied with. A word of warning, if you do not make a challenge within that timeframe, you will be barred from any future related complaint.
- If you do have to make a Challenge, you should request a copy of the last CAAS Survey on that property from Amey and based on that, gather as much factual evidence as you can, including photo images and talking to neighbours with the exact same type of property as yours.
- Contact your Service Community Support Officer (SCSO) and seek their advice and guidance.
- You should be aware that the vast majority of Challenges are rejected, in the order of 95%.
- If you consider the explanation of the rejection to be unsatisfactory, you then have the option to make a formal Appeal.
- Volume 3 of the JSP 464 provides the guidance and directives policy for CAAS.
If you have a question about CAAS unanswered by this post, we have two resident housing specialists at the Families federation who can answer your questions and provide advice and support.
More information on Housing
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