Regrading of Service Families Accommodation (SFA)

Discussion in 'Army Pay, Claims & JPA' started by StudentGrant, Oct 11, 2004.

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  1. I have just been informed that my quarter has been re-graded from grade 3 to grade 2. This isn't due to an extensive refurbishment programme but is apparantly due to Defence Housing setting new criteria for assessing the grades. Almost every grade 3 quarter at my station has been upgraded due to this new set of criteria. In real terms this means a rise in quartering charge of £1000 per year approx (after tax).

    My questions are:

    Has this process happened Army wide?
    Can Defence Housing change the grading criteria without consultation?
    Should I complain, winge, sulk or fall on my sword?

    Before anyone says so, I realise renting in civi street is more expensive, but I am not a civi and cheap rent was one of the last benefits left.
     
  2. Not that I am aware of, this sort of thing happens in each DHE area without any link to the others.

    No they can not change the criteria (they are set MOD wide), but they can regrade quarters or rectify mistakes made in previous gradings. From memory each grading is conducted much like a Board of Officers, with reps from the local units/garrison. The criteria used for FQs gradings are rather complex, so 'merely' adding extra power sockets could tip the balance from a grade 3 to 2, for example.

    I think that you should call the DHE and ask them what has changed. If it does not sound right, look for the JSP that lists all of the criteria for FQs (I can help if you need help finding it), speak to your neighbours, your RAO/QM/Welfare officer and see if they can shed any light on the problem. Failing all of that, post back on Arrse and pick the collective brains.
     
  3. Thanks Doomsayer. I haver asked my RAO for the details. By way of interest the following was e-mailed to us all from our Families Officer ref the regrading

    This is why I thought it may be Army wide
     
  4. Sounds like someone was a little too keen to apply the new criteria? That sort of mindless efficiency is normally reserved for the RAF.

    I will try and find out if the JSP (that lists all of the DHE/FQ criteria) has been updated. It seems odd that your families officer implies that the SFA criteria have been changed MOD wide and no-one else has noticed.

    BTW what criteria did they list as being judged?
     
  5. Once you have been notified of an amendment to your qtr charges - if my memory is correct you have 3 months in which to "challenge" the new grade, this must be done in writing.

    You can also ask to see how they (the board) came to its findings.

    Also before a BOO is called it must be published on P1Os so that you have a chance to bring to the BOO any reservations you may have, thus thwarting the possibility of a "challenge" coming forward.


    Hope that helps
     
  6. From DHE site:

    How Charges are Calculated

    SFA is assessed against a scale measuring size, fixtures and fittings and checked to identify if each home lacks any important facilities. Properties are graded from 1 to 4 under Single Service 4 tier grading systems with grade 1 being the highest level of charges raised. For example, a below scale number of electrical sockets might affect the grading and result in paying lower charges.

    Environment and location also can affect the grade given and therefore the level of charges to pay. A property meeting the scale and in perfect condition may not be grade 1 if it is a considerable distance from shops, banks or a public bus route.

    DHE and your local unit commander may reduce charges if there is a loss of an amenity or adverse environmental factors such as unacceptable levels of noise from site work for more than 7 days.

    Following refurbishment, a Board of Officers usually chaired by the Services, reviews houses against the grading criteria. The improvements could merit a higher grade and thus higher accommodation charges. Properties being refurbished could be downgraded during the refurbishment then upgraded when the work is complete. Copies of the 4 Tier Grading System documents are held at unit level and DHE Area Offices.

    Fact

    You have the right to ask how your home has been graded.

    For reference: JSP 464 - Tri-Service Accommodation Regulations
     
  7. I can confirm that many quarters areas have been regraded. Indeed it is a regular occurence as DHE upgrade, then there is a regrading exercise involving the infrastructure chain of command.

    If still unclear, then write to your customer care officer copy to your chain of command/OC and ask for an explanation.