Service family accommodation

A guide for service families about applying for, maintaining, moving in and out of and living in UK service family accommodation (SFA).

Project Speed: additional government funding to improve service families accommodation

On 17 July 2020 the Defence Secretary and the Chancellor of the Exchequer jointly announced £200-million of new Government funding to improve accommodation for Service personnel. These exciting improvement works will take place over the next 18 months throughout the UK SFA estate. For details of these improvements and how these works will be carried out please read the Fiscal Stimulus update guidance (October 2020) (PDF, 162KB, 5 pages).

122-million investment will deliver 800 properties, improving 2,700 properties, increase energy efficiency, improvements to lived environment for example 16 roads, solar panels and replacing 20 older play parks.

Fiscal funding infographic. DIO Crown Copyright 2020.


Coronavirus latest news as of 21 August 2020

Moving back into SFA in the UK from an overseas posting

If you are returning to the UK from a country that is currently exempt from the government’s up to date list of Coronavirus (COVID-19): travel corridors and moving into SFA then you must appoint a proxy to undertake the Move In appointment on your behalf whilst you are in the quarantine period.

Reopening of Playparks

DIO recognise that playparks are hugely important to families and we are pleased that they will be reopened across SFA estates, in line with current Government COVID 19 guidance:

  • Scotland: All play parks to be open by COP Friday 10 July
  • England: All play parks to be open by COP Friday 10 July
  • Northern Ireland: All play parks to be open by COP Friday 10 July
  • Wales: All play parks to be open on 19 July.

Statutory and Mandatory Safety Checks and Service Family Accommodation

It is vital that we provide serving personnel and their families with safe, compliant and well-maintained homes. Amey will continue to carry out statutory and mandatory safety checks, response and pre-planned maintenance, and grounds maintenance across the SFA estate in line with government and Health and Safety Executive advice.

We understand the concerns service families may have at this difficult time and it is important that they understand how safety checks on their home will be managed. We have therefore worked with Amey to produce an animation to reassure families that the safety of occupants and operatives is a priority when checks are carried out to keep their homes safe.

Transcript for Transcript for Help us to help you: what to expect when an Amey engineer visits your home video (ODT, 8.52KB).

DIO Accommodation has developed a Housing Recovery Plan that we are keen to share with you which focuses on 3 key areas of service delivery:

  • the regeneration of house moves from 15 June 2020
  • the recovery of outstanding Statutory and Mandatory safety testing
  • the reactivation of housing project works and minor works, together with the delivery of a full response maintenance service.

We have updated our Covid-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to cover each activity.

Regeneration of assignments

You will have heard the recent announcements in relation to the easing of Covid-19 restrictions on moving house in England. These create the conditions for people to move house with immediate effect within the private and social housing market sectors if they so wish.

This, together with recent TLB announcements on the phased regeneration of service personnel assignments from 1 July, provides the authority for DIO Accommodation to recommence delivery of a timely SFA allocation and move-in/out service. However, all questions in relation to assignment dates, should be directed to the Service Manning Authorities in the first instance.

We are working closely with all TLBs, our Industry Partners Amey and Mears, and DE&S who manage the Agility removals service to ensure that our service delivery fully supports the Defence requirement. In essence, Assignment Orders received prior to lockdown will remain valid, albeit deferred by 3 months. Consequently, Service personnel who were due to be assigned in April will be first to move in July, followed by May movers in August, and June movers in September.

We fully acknowledge that the 3 month delay will have impacted on family circumstances, and may have an associated impact on pre-Covid-19 housing plans. Moreover, the government announcement on moving home in England provides scope for single services to consider bringing forward some moves within England to June. Taken together, these new measures will require delivery plans to remain agile and adaptable. DIO Accommodation will therefore continue to work closely with the TLBs to ensure that SFA homes can be prepared, on time, to meet the demand, and that the removals service is appropriately aligned.

Due to the backlog of moves, our initial priority will be to meet the TLB requirement for entitled service family moves; this includes the call forward of families where service personnel have moved unaccompanied. In due course, Amey and Mears will contact service personnel to discuss their move.

All other applications for SFA, such as betterment moves, or those from cohabitating couples, will be prioritised once the main moves for entitled personnel between July and September have been met; this will allow the surplus SFA position to be fully understood. However, we will consider Chain of Command supported SFA applications from eligible personnel on a case by case basis at any stage. In addition, all requests for retention of existing SFA will be considered in line with extant policy.

DIO and Amey will follow government guidance on house moves to ensure the safety and protection of all concerned.

This is a complex and evolving situation for DIO and its Industry Partners to manage, and one that requires careful handling throughout. We will keep you fully informed of developments, and welcome your understanding at what we expect to be a very busy time. We will keep our FAQs updated to respond to queries and signpost to appropriate support mechanisms.

Works on the SFA estate during the Coronavirus crisis

Update as at 22 April 2020

As we move into a further 3-week Covid-19 lockdown, there are a number of steps we continue to take to ensure you and your SFA remain safe:

It is vital that at all times we provide you with a safe, compliant and well-maintained home, and so, in line with Government and Health and Safety Executive advice, Amey will continue to carry out response and pre-planned maintenance, and grounds maintenance on the SFA estate.

We understand and share the concerns of Service families at this difficult time. Therefore, in carrying out their work, Amey staff and their industry partners will follow government guidelines and protect your health and safety by:

  • confirming in advance whether anyone at the property is self-isolating or social distancing
  • washing hands for 20+ seconds using soap and warm water at the nearest available hand wash basin on arrival and before departure
  • using anti-bacterial hand gel where there are no hand washing facilities
  • wearing an ID card in a visible position
  • remaining more than 2 metres from other people
  • asking occupants to move to another room/area while the work is carried out
  • cleaning tools and equipment using sanitisation spray or wipes.

While we continue to deliver the full range of response and pre-planned maintenance tasks, a reduction in the availability of materials means that some routine tasks may take longer than usual. However, Amey will always endeavour to respond to emergency and critical maintenance calls within contracted timelines.

As you may be aware, the Health and Safety Executive has directed that scheduled Gas and Electrical safety checks should continue. An annual Gas Safety check is a legal requirement for all landlords, and the MOD is no different in this respect; the check is an essential safety requirement to ensure that your home is gas-safe and to reduce the potential for a carbon monoxide incident. In addition, keeping electrical systems in good condition is extremely important for the safety and smooth functioning of your home, and reduces the potential for electrical fires.

All but essential SFA moves have been postponed to 1 July at the earliest, and we will maintain communications with all service families affected by this decision.

Please be assured that the safety of Service families and staff remains our highest priority. We welcome your continued support during the Covid-19 crisis, especially in allowing access to your home so that we can carry out essential safety checks. You can read more about the steps we are taking, together with answers to Frequently Asked Questions.

COVID-19 update Substitute Accommodation as of October 2020

Update on local restrictions and lockdown

The UK Government has announced a 3-tier system of restrictions due to high rates of Covid-19 in certain areas of England. The Scottish Government is currently applying local restrictions.

In Wales, as well as local restrictions, the Welsh Government has announced a ‘firebreak’ lockdown from 23 October to 9 November. Restrictions during this time include inhibiting movement in and out of Wales and the closure of letting agents and hotels. This may limit the ability of our industry partner, Mears, to provide the full service for Substitute Accommodation.

Outlined below are some of the services that may be affected and details of how Mears is working with its supply chain to overcome some of the expected challenges.

New moves: Wales

Lettings Agents in Wales have been advised to close from 23 October to 9 November. While house moves are permitted to go ahead, the closure of Lettings Agents will impact on Mears’ ability to conduct viewings pre-tenancy and to obtain keys. There may be similar issues in other areas should, the ‘circuit breaker’ approach to local lockdowns become more widespread. Mears will be working with DIO and Units to keep Service Personnel informed of any issues with sourcing accommodation.

New moves: England/Scotland

Housing markets are currently still open in England and Scotland. However, it is important to allow as much time as possible for new applications for Substitute Accommodation to enable Mears to plan and work with local agents/landlords/hotels to ensure a suitable property or temporary accommodation is sourced. Information on the process for applying for Substitute Accommodation can be found on the Defence Intranet (accessible to MOD personnel only).

Temporary Accommodation for Wales

Hotels in Wales have been advised to close from 23 October to 9 November unless they have specific arrangements in place to remain open for key workers. This may impact on Mears’ ability to source appropriate temporary accommodation.

Mears is working with its supply chain to ensure there is availability in hotels where required and will work with DIO and Units to ensure every applicant is accommodated. Although this is currently not an issue in England and Scotland, Mears and DIO will continue to monitor the situation.


Furniture provision may also be impacted by tighter restrictions. Mears is working with the supply chain to limit any impact on service, but there may be instances where full furniture packs are not available at the right time to start occupation. Mears will liaise with individuals affected to determine the best course of action on a case by case basis.


Cleaning of properties prior to move-in may also be affected in these areas. Mears is working with the supply chain to ensure it has access to the correct information and to source alternative cleaners where necessary. However, due to the tight timeframes involved, individual moves may be affected. Mears will liaise with individuals who are affected and endeavour to ensure properties meet standard at move in.


Contractors continue to be affected by a national backlog following the lockdown and subsequent local restrictions across the UK. For Wales, the guidance remains that Emergency, Critical and Urgent repairs and maintenance activities can continue although routine tasks will be deferred until after the lifting of the lockdown. However, many contractors have limited capacity and availability and delays may be encountered. We appreciate the patience of occupants during this time and will endeavour to minimise resolution times wherever possible.


The provision of good quality living accommodation for service personnel and their families is an important priority for the Ministry of Defence (MOD).

The MOD’s Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) manages around 50,000 properties in the UK including planning targeted improvement programmes and planning future requirements. On behalf of the DIO, Amey, manages a comprehensive maintenance service; the allocation of properties; SFA furniture; conducting move in and move out appointments; and the provision of improvements.

Example image of Service family accommodation shows a modern semi detached house with garage and shared front garden of green lawns.

Service family accommodation in Buckinghamshire (MOD/Crown Copyright)

The Customer Service Charter is DIO’s commitment to Service personnel and their families to provide decent living standards and excellent customer service. We are committed to improving the condition and standard of the Service Family Accommodation (SFA) estate; sustaining improved levels of maintenance and repair performance; and enhancing customer service.

Entitlement for SFA and SSFA

To be entitled to apply for SFA, service personnel must:

  • be aged 18 and over
  • be married or in a civil partnership or who have permanent custody of children
  • have at least 6 months to serve

Service personnel who have completed more than 4 years of service and are in an established Long-Term Relationship (LTR(E)) are also eligible to cohabit in surplus SFA, when available. An LTR(E) will be defined by specified criteria and recorded as such on Joint Personnel Administration (JPA).

SFA is at service personnel’s duty station or within a set radius; although you may be eligible to apply for surplus SFA at other locations.

The type of property you are entitled to is usually dependent on your rank for officers and family size for other ranks. When you apply for SFA, Amey Occupancy Services Team will allocate you a property using the preferences you have expressed and based on your entitlement or eligibility, competing requirements, and service agreements.

Full details on entitlement and eligibility for UK SFA and Substitute service family accommodation (SSFA) are available in:

Full details on entitlement and eligibility for overseas SFA and SSFA are available in:

SFA costs and charges

Charges for service family accommodation (SFA) for service personnel are set by the Armed Forces Pay Review Body. The current SFA accommodation charges are available to view.

Pay queries

If you have a standard query about your pay in connection with SFA charges, please contact the Amey helpdesk on 0800 707 6000, providing full details (such as your service number) about why you believe that charges have been applied incorrectly so this can be investigated.

CAAS challenges

If you wish to challenge or appeal against your charge as a result of the Combined Accommodation Assessment System (CAAS) then the correct procedure is set out on the CAAS challenges page on the Defence Intranet.

To access the dedicated CAAS Intranet page, copy and paste the following URL into your browser address bar when logged on to the Defence Intranet:

Full details on ‘grade for charge’ are available in:

Applying for and allocation of SFA

e-1132 form

If you are entitled, you will need to complete and submit an application for SFA. All service personnel who have access to the Defence Intranet are expected to complete their application online using the e-1132 form. To access the form, copy and paste the following URL into your browser address bar when logged on to the Defence Intranet:

The e-1132 form system allows you to:

  • track the progress of your application
  • view available properties that match your entitlement
  • register your top 3 preferences
  • book your ‘move in’ (once an offer for a property has been made and accepted,)
  • where appropriate book your ‘move out’ appointment
  • electronically signing your licence to occupy.

MOD Form 1132

For service personnel who do not have access to the Defence Intranet, a paper version of the MOD Form 1132: application to occupy service family accommodation (SFA) is available in JSP 464: tri-service accommodation regulations (TSARs) Part 2, Chapter 4. Exceptions to using the online system are normally for personnel who are on operations and do not have access to the Defence Intranet.

Amey Occupancy Services team

If you have an allocations enquiry, the Amey Occupancy Services team at the Amey helpdesk is available Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 3:00pm.

You can call them on Freephone: 0800 707 6000 Select Option 3 (for calls made within the UK, mobile users may incur charges) or using the alternative telephone number: 0151 728 1630

Or you can email the team:

For more information about the SFA application process, please visit the Amey website

Substitute accommodation

Once in possession of a Non-availability certificate (NAC) you will be able to advance your e-1132 or E1154 application to the DIO Substitute Accommodation team.

To access the E1154 form, copy and paste the following URL into your browser address bar when logged on to the Defence Intranet:

For E1154 applications, when all parts have been completed please email your form to

Your application will then be sent to the substitute accommodation contractor (Mears Group).

Substitute accommodation contractor

From the 1 April 2016 Mears Group were contracted to provide all substitute accommodation for both substitute service family accommodation (SSFA) and single service substitute accommodation (SSSA) taking over from the previous contractor (HCR Ltd).

Mears have now taken over the management of all leases from HCR and will provide in occupation management for the whole of the substitute accommodation portfolio including repairs and maintenance.

In occupancy management

Service personnel occupying a substitute accommodation property should now contact Mears for all occupation queries including out of hours emergencies on the following telephone number 0800 032 4547.

The phone line is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 am to 5:00pm (except bank holidays).

Alternatively you can email

Further information about substitute accommodation (such as temporary accommodation if the required by date is not met, expenses claims and claim form, payment of bills and a frequently asked questions guide) is available on the Defence Intranet.

Service personnel can copy and paste the following URL into your browser address bar when logged on to the Defence Intranet:

Additional needs and disabled requirements for SFA

If you are moving to a new SFA property, please provide details of any special requirements for SFA at the point of application using the e-1132 form or the MOD Form 1132, enclosing any reports from the appropriate professional source, such as your occupational therapist. It is important that the Amey Occupancy Services team is made aware of special requirements at the earliest opportunity.

If you require adaptions to your current SFA property, or your medical requirements have changed and you need some further adaptions to your existing SFA, you will need to contact the Helpdesk who will record your request and ask you to provide a Medical Report and/or Occupational Therapist’s report in order to progress your request.

Please read our Additional needs and disabled requirements guides.

Moving in

When you accept an offer of an SFA property you should arrange a ‘move in’ appointment using the e-1132 system.

At the agreed date and time, Amey Accommodation Officer will meet you at the property and show you around.

They will give you the opportunity to:

  • familiarise yourself with your new home, its fixtures, fittings and appliances
  • read electricity/gas meters and measure levels in oil tanks
  • take possession of the keys
  • identify who is responsible for any repair or maintenance queries
  • confirm that there is a valid Gas Safety Certificate in the SFA
  • complete and sign the move in documentation

You are required to inspect the property to ensure it meets the Move In standard as outlined on the Amey website, signing to agree or otherwise that this standard has been met.

You can give your spouse/civil partner or a service colleague written authority (known as a ‘Proxy certificate’) to sign the inventory on your behalf if you are unable to attend the ‘move in’ appointment. Please note that the ‘move in’ can only take place during normal working hours.

If you are moving from one SFA (not substitute SFA) to another, you have 2 weeks to hand it back, provided you do so within this time you will only be charged for one property. If you exceed this period you may be charged for both properties.

Housing guide

Service personnel and their families moving into SFA should read the guides available on the Amey website, which contains important information about the services offered and the responsibilities of customers.

You will also be provided with a copy of the SFA 14 day observation form at your Move In.

Licence to occupy insurance

When you live in SFA you should ensure that you have adequate insurance. In addition to arranging contents insurance to protect your personal possessions, the MOD strongly recommends (in accordance with JSP 464) to take out ‘Licence to occupy’ insurance. This specialist insurance covers your potential liability incurred as a result of damage to your SFA caused by you or your family and would provide you with cover up to the required £20,000.

The Services Insurance and Investment Advisory Panel (SIIAP) website provides details of insurers who can supply this insurance and includes websites and telephone numbers for a range of relevant insurance companies. If you are unable to find relevant information on the websites available, we suggest that you call the insurer using the telephone numbers which are also provided. If you already have Kit insurance with one of these specialist insurers, it may be worth checking if you are already covered, as some insurance policies include Licence to Occupy insurance.

Maintenance and repairs of SFA and SSFA

Amey is responsible for the maintenance of SFA in the United Kingdom.

This comprehensive service is free to occupants, who generally have little responsibility for the maintenance of their SFA - some examples of your responsibilities are listed below, see looking after your SFA.

However, customers are responsible for looking after their property and protecting it from damage, and damage caused may be subject to charges.

Maintenance helpdesk

You are required to report any defects to your SFA in the UK to the Amey Helpdesk, which is open 24 hours, 365 days a year:

Freephone: 0800 707 6000, select Option 1 (for calls made within the UK, mobile users may incur charges). Alternative telephone: 0151 728 1630

You can also talk to someone about maintenance/repairs at one of the Amey customer service centres or visit the Amey website.

SSFA repairs

Mears Group Limited took over the management of SSFA and SSSA on 1 April 2016.

For reporting faults to substitute properties, you can telephone 0800 032 4547 or email

The phone line is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 am to 5:00pm (except bank holidays).

Emergency repairs outside office hours including weekends and bank holidays you can telephone Mears Emergency Contact Centre on 0800 032 4547.

Private Finance Initiative housing

The telephone numbers for reporting faults to PFI housing are:

PFI housing Telephone Regions covered
Cosford/Shawbury PFI 0345 111 0000 (office hours) or 0845 0500 900 (out of hours) Market Drayton, Donnington Wood, Telford
Wattisham PFI 0203 603 9472 Pinewood, Thorington Park, Ipswich, Redhill, Aldham Mill Hill, Hadleigh
Yeovilton PFI 0300 777 7837 Broadsword Park, Ilchester, Yeovil
Portsmouth PFI 01275 378 481 Emerson’s Green (Bristol), Long Ashton (Bristol), Stoke Park (Bristol), Paxcroft Mead (Trowbridge), , Trowbridge, Seafield Park (Fareham) ,
Portsmouth 2 PFI 01275 378 481 HMS Daedalus (Lee on Solent)
Lossiemouth PFI 0800 917 8732 Lossiemouth, Elgin
Central Scotland PFI 0800 288 8771 Paisley, Dreghorn and Longstone (Edinburgh)

For reporting faults to leased properties, Bulk Lease Hires, (not covered by the Annington Homes Ltd (AHL) sale agreement in 1996), please contact:

Area Telephone
Bardney (Nr Coningsby, Lincolnshire) 0800 027 2057
Ashford 0800 988 2433
Brecon, includes Honddu Court 0800 988 2433
Brize Norton, includes Carterton/Witney/North Leigh 0800 988 2433
Darlington, includes West Park/Devonshire Court 0800 988 2433
Dover, Whitfield 0800 988 2433
Folkstone 0800 988 2433
Gloucester: includes Tewkesbury, Kingsway, Hucclecote 0800 988 2433
Hawkinge 0800 988 2433
Leeming Bar (North Yorks) 0300 555 5561
Salisbury: includes Amesbury, east Anton, Tidworth, Andover, Saxon Rise, Collingbourne, Archers Gate, Saxon Gate 0800 988 2433
York, Accomb 0800 988 2433
Nuneaton 0800 988 2433

Looking after your SFA

You are responsible for keeping your home in a reasonable condition during the time you occupy SFA, and protecting it from damage. In addition, you need to take care of:

  • changing domestic fuses and light bulbs
  • taking precautions to prevent damage to the SFA by fire, frost, the bursting of water pipes and the blocking of drains
  • clearing any sink or bath blockages
  • routine testing and cleaning of smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms
  • resetting of electrical trip switches due to faulty bulbs
  • ensuring that all repairs are reported to the relevant maintenance helpdesk as they occur

Amey has a range of customer information available on their website.

Example of service family accommodation showing 2 military personnel walking past 3 blocks of housing, all of which are 3 storeys high. There is off road car parking and speed bumps.

Service family accommodation in south west London (MOD/Crown Copyright)

Moving out

Moving home can be a very busy and stressful time, so we want to make your move as easy and stress free for you and your family as possible.

Visit the Amey website for details on moving out of the UK SFA, arranging a pre move out appointment and find out details about the Amey Walk Away Cleaning Scheme.

Move out

Your move out will be attended by a Amey Accommodation Officer who will inspect your SFA to determine if it meets the agreed move out standard.

If the standard is not satisfactory and there are deficiencies or damages that are not considered to be fair wear and tear, or you have failed to clean the property properly, a charge will be raised by the Accommodation Officer and you will be invoiced accordingly.

In this instance an appropriate Joint Personnel Administration (JPA) action will be taken by the Amey Occupancy Services team to cease accommodation charges on that property from the date of your move out.

Removal services

Agility Logistics Limited (Agility) is the MOD approved service provider for removals and is part of the Global Removal Management Services (GRMS).

Charges for damage and deficiencies for SFA and Substitute SFA recovery from pay

When you move out of UK service family accommodation (SFA) or substitute service family accommodation (SSFA), you may be liable for charges for damages or deficiencies that are not classed as fair wear and tear or because you have failed to prepare the property to the correct standard, for example cleanliness.

DIO can take these directly from the pay of serving personnel. Any payments taken depend on the size of the charge and individual monthly income (using MOD guidelines to ensure that deductions do not exceed a set limit of pay).

If you consider that you are not responsible for the charges, or part of them, for example that the damage is the result of fair wear and tear,you are able to dispute the charge raised using the stage 1 disputed charges form’.

Once the stage 1 dispute has been completed and formally closed, should you disagree with the charges raised and stage 1 decision, you may submit a stage 2 dispute to the appropriate DIO Accommodation Manager responsible for the property using the stage 2 disputed charges form.

Full details on moving out of your SFA and recoveries from pay are available in:

Loss of entitlement

For enquiries about loss of entitlement to SFA resulting from retirement, redundancy, discharge or estrangement, please contact the Loss of Entitlement Team by telephoning 01904 418000 or 94510 8000.

Alternatively, you can contact the team by email:

If you believe that you will lose entitlement to SFA in the future, or find yourself in this situation, advice is available from a variety of sources. As well as the Joint Service Housing Advice Office, other sources of information and advice are: service charities; families federations; housing advice centres; and local authorities.

Customer service centres

There are a number of Amey customer service centres throughout the UK. These offices provide you with the opportunity to discuss any issues about services provided by Amey face-to-face.

To find your nearest local customer service centre either contact the Amey Helpdesk on 0800 707 6000 or visit the Amey website.

SFA compensation scheme

The MOD and its industry partners aim to provide the highest possible standard of service to those entitled service personnel and their families who live in service family accommodation (SFA) and substitute service family accommodation (SSFA) in the UK.

On occasion when those standards are not met in 2 specific activities, MOD will now recognise this by paying compensation, through High Street vouchers only, to offset any inconvenience caused. The SFA compensation scheme specifically covers:

  • missed appointments
  • significant defect(s) at move

Full details about the scheme and how to claim are published in the SFA compensation claim fact sheet

Making a complaint/customer services

DIO Accommodation and Amey are focused on providing the best service we can to service personnel and their families. However, sometimes things go wrong so below is guidance about the correct process if you wish to make a complaint.

Whatever the problem, we will endeavour to sort it out as quickly as possible. We value your feedback and monitor complaints to help us focus on improving our service in those areas.

CAAS challenges

CAAS challenges are handled in 2 stages (and are separate from the SFA complaints process below).

If you wish to challenge or appeal against your charge as a result of the Combined Accommodation Assessment System (CAAS) then the correct procedure is set out on the CAAS challenges page on the Defence Intranet.

To access the dedicated CAAS Intranet page, copy and paste the following URL into your browser address bar when logged on to the Defence Intranet:

Please note: The Stage 2 complaint form highlighted below cannot be used for CAAS challenges.

SFA complaints

Complaints are handled in 3 stages, with the aim of making sure that the majority can be fully investigated and promptly put right. If you are dissatisfied by the response at any stage, you will be given the opportunity to go to the next stage.

Complaint submission timings

To effectively deal with complaints, it is necessary for them to be considered as close as possible to the date of the matter arising. Therefore, complaints are to be submitted within the timings detailed below. Complaints submitted outside these timings will only be considered if there are clear extenuating circumstances, such as deployments, training etc. Accepting complaints outside of these timings will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

  • Stage 1 - Submission within 28 working days of the incident
  • Stage 2 - Submission within 28 working days from receipt of the Stage 1 response
  • Stage 3 - Submission within 28 working days from receipt of the Stage 2 response

*If the complaint is related to a culmination of events/matters, then it should be submitted within 28 days of the last event.

Full information about SFA complaints can be found in JSP 464: tri-service accommodation regulations (TSARs) Volume 1, Part 1, Chapter 6

Stage 1

If you are dissatisfied with our service please call the Amey Helpdesk on 0800 707 6000 or visit the Amey website.

Once you have registered a complaint, a Amey customer care manager will contact you, and give you a reference number for your complaint. They will explain how the process works and keep you regularly updated on the progress of your complaint.

If you are not satisfied with the way the complaint is handled or you want to speak to someone more senior, you can speak to a senior manager at the Helpdesk or a Amey director.

Stage 2

If your complaint has been formally closed at stage 1 and you are not satisfied with the response, you can then escalate your complaint to the DIO Customer Services Team. You can do this in 3 ways:

  1. Interactive form: by completing the stage 2 complaint form, which for security reasons is only available on the MOD Intranet. To access the form, copy and paste the following URL into your browser address bar when logged on to the Defence Intranet:

2.Email: by emailing the DIO Customer Service Team setting out your stage 2 complaint so that you include:

  • the stage 1 complaint reference number
  • your name and telephone number
  • the SFA address relating to your complaint
  • why you are not happy with the result of your stage 1 complaint
  • what desired outcome or remedy you are seeking

Any emails not containing all of this information will not be accepted by the Customer Service Team. Please send your email to:

3.Letter: by writing to the DIO Customer Service Team setting out your stage 2 complaint ensuring you include the information highlighted above.

Customer Service Team
DIO Accommodation
Ground Floor, Mail Point No. 4
Swales Pavilion
RAF Wyton
PE28 2EA

If you make a stage 2 complaint, DIO will have access to your stage 1 complaints details and records, so you do not need to re-submit the full details of your complaint.

DIO will acknowledge it within 3 working days and provide you with a reference number. An investigation will then be carried out, however there is no standard response time due to the need to further investigate complaints that vary in nature and complexity.

Stage 3

If you are not satisfied with the response you receive at stage 1 and stage 2, you can escalate your complaint to the Accommodation Complaints Review Panel by writing to:

Accommodation Complaints Review Panel
People Accommodation
Ministry of Defence
Floor 6, Zone N
Main Building

Further independent advice

You can also seek independent advice through your:

  • local service welfare organisations
  • Unit Welfare Officer
  • RAF Community Support Officer or Unit Families Officer
  • Families Federations representatives
  • HIVE

Alternatively there are civilian organisations such as Citizens Advice Bureau, service charities or housing advice centres who can help.

Downgrading or compensation

Amey and DIO do not have authority to pay compensation or loss of earnings. We may temporarily downgrade accommodation charges where a major loss of amenity has occurred. Permanent downgrading can only be approved by a Board of Officers.

UK SFA Customer Survey

A monthly telephone survey of randomly selected customers is conducted by Opinion Research Service (ORS) on behalf of the MOD. The aim of the research is to help MOD better understand the views of service personnel and families living in UK service family accommodation (SFA) and substitute SFA (SSFA).

Although customers do not have to take part, we encourage them to respond to this short survey as your opinions will be used to measure how DIO is performing and identify ways of making further improvements to the housing service that matter to you. Answers are treated in the strictest confidence and only used for research purposes.

If you have any queries about the survey, or would like to follow up a call, please phone ORS on 01792 535322. Please note that ORS only deal with SFA customer survey related issues.

The results of the survey are issued to key DIO accommodation stakeholders on a quarterly basis: DIO accommodation customer satisfaction tracker survey

The Combined accommodation assessment system (CAAS) for service homes

The CAAS for service family accommodation (SFA) is the method of setting charges in the UK and overseas and replaces the 4 Tier Grading (4TG) System (except Germany). CAAS is a fairer and less subjective system than the 4TG System, and ensures that charges for SFA are set in accordance with modern, nationally recognised standards (utilising the Department of Communities and Local Government Decent Homes Standard. Where charges increase there will be transitional protection that will set a maximum cap for the increase in any single year.

The Combined Accommodation Assessment System (CAAS) will be updated on 1 October 2020 to bring CAAS charging in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales in line with England by introducing a location assessment based on access to local services. This step has been included in policy for England since 2016 and means that all Service Family Accommodation (SFA) in the UK will be charged using the same measure. This will deliver a fairer application of the UK Location Factor to all SFA across the UK. For more information please visit the Combined Accommodation Assessment System: the new accommodation charging system explained page.

Published 12 December 2012
Last updated 22 October 2020 + show all updates
  1. Added the Substitute Accommodation update, as of October 2020.

  2. Added Project Speed: Additional Government Funding to Improve Service Families Accommodation information.

  3. Added a new update under the 'Coronavirus latest news' heading.

  4. Updated the 'Substitute accommodation' section.

  5. Updated information regarding the reopening of play-parks added.

  6. Added a new notice about the changes to the Combined Accommodation Assessment System.

  7. Added new content under the 'Coronavirus latest news' and 'Statutory and Mandatory Safety Checks and Service Family Accommodation' headings.

  8. Added a Coronavirus update as of 8 June 2020 and new FAQs about the Housing Recovery Plan.

  9. Added a section on the Regeneration of assignments during the COVID-19 crisis.

  10. Added a new attachment entitled FAQs for service personnel in substitute accommodation.

  11. Updated the Frequently asked questions regarding Coronavirus for the MOD housing community.

  12. Added an update on works on the SFA estate during the COVID-19 lock down, as of 22 April 2020.

  13. Updated the frequently asked questions regarding Coronavirus for the MOD housing community.

  14. Added Frequently Asked Questions regarding Coronavirus for the MOD housing community.

  15. Updated the Service Family Accommodation Coronavirus with new section named 'Works on the SFA estate during the Coronavirus crisis'.

  16. Added additional information to the Coronavirus update.

  17. Added an additional Coronavirus update message.

  18. Added a Coronavirus update from the Head of Accommodation DIO.

  19. Added new information and phone number for the SFA survey.

  20. Updated page content.

  21. Updated content under heading 'Charges for damage and deficiencies for SFA and Substitute SFA recovery from pay'.

  22. Updated the UK SFA customer survey telephone number.

  23. Updated information under 'Private Finance Initiative housing' heading.

  24. Sections update on contact emails in 'Loss of entitlement' and 'Complaints'.

  25. Added a sentence under the entitlement of SFA.

  26. Updated the SSFA repairs section contact email address.

  27. Updated web links

  28. Updated website link to CAAS intranet page

  29. Updated the link to the e-1132 form.

  30. Updated the web text to reflect name change from Carillon Amey to Amey.

  31. Updated the CarillionAmey Occupancy Services team contact email address.

  32. Amended the body text to reflect the fact that Charges for service family accommodation are now available.

  33. Updated text about MOD Form 1132 and updated contact email addresses.

  34. Updated the information to reflect the revisions made to the Service family accommodation (SFA) complaints process on Tuesday 1 May 2018.

  35. Small text changes and replacement of PDF to reflect that as from 1 April 2018 – DIO Service Delivery Accommodation becomes DIO Accommodation.

  36. Updated PFI housing contacts list.

  37. Updated details of company who conducts the monthly telephone survey to Opinion Research Service (ORS)

  38. Updated information about Additional needs and disabled requirements for service family accommodation

  39. Updated links to new website

  40. Added SFA compensation scheme.

  41. Updated Stage 2 complaints information.

  42. Updated 'Making a complaint/customer services' section.

  43. Added new paragraph regarding CAAS challenges.

  44. Updated the 'SFA costs' section to include a section on charges, pay queries and CAAS challenges and include a link to the current SFA accommodation charges.

  45. Updated information about substitute accommodation.

  46. Updated contact details for SSFA repairs.

  47. Updated section on CAAS Charge Band letters.

  48. Updated Introduction of combined accommodation assessment system section

  49. Corrected broken links to CarillionAmey website.

  50. Updated Making a complaint/customer services section.

  51. Added new paragraph at end of the CAAS section.

  52. Added new paragraph on Introduction of Combined Accommodation Assessment System (CAAS) for service homes

  53. Changed opening times for CarillionAmey Occupancy Services team. Added Leeming Bar (North Yorks) contact details to Maintenance and repairs of SFA and SSFA table.

  54. Amended CarillionAmey Occupancy Services email address.

  55. Changes throughout content.

  56. Updated the Move in and move out sections for the next phase of the National Housing Prime contract on Monday 1 December.

  57. Updated content following new contract with CarillonAmey which came into effect 1 November 2014.

  58. Updated announcement.

  59. Updated information about the 'Pre move-out Advisory Visit'.

  60. Amended DIO Service Family Accommodation satisfaction survey text and included link to survey.

  61. Added an announcement about the 'National Housing Prime Contract: contract award'

  62. Added links to Service family accommodation maintenance guide, customer guides and Service family accommodation factsheets.

  63. Updated the telephone numbers for Lossiemouth PFI and Central Scotland PFI under the Private Finance Initiative housing section.

  64. Updated information about the Pre-payment cleaning scheme (England and Wales).

  65. Information within the Housing Allocations Service Centre (HASC) section has been updated as teams have been reduced from 8 to 7.

  66. Added revised customer guides as team has changed from DIO Operations Accommodation to DIO Service Delivery (SD) Accommodation.

  67. Added information about the process and how to dispute a charge to damaged service family accomodation once a service family has moved out.

  68. Updated details in the 'What if I don’t wish to accept the offer?' section

  69. Added paragraph DIOI/SFA customer charter paragraph.

  70. Added new paragraph "How much does SFA cost?"

  71. Added information about the 'move in' welcome pack and updated the Customer Assistance Point (CAP) factsheet

  72. Updated to include information about SFA Customer Assistance Points (CAPs)

  73. Updated information about the UK SFA Customer Survey

  74. Added UK SFA Customer Survey content

  75. Updated information

  76. Updated the 'How do I apply for SFA?' section

  77. First published.