Tenant and Resident Engagement - Annual report to tenants 2018/19

Annual Report 2018/19

Contents

Introduction

Each year, Bassetlaw District Council is required to tell tenants what we have achieved over the last 12 months and what our priorities are for the next year ahead.

We call this our Annual Report to Tenants, which looks at our performance in the five key areas that have been set out by Homes England - the Regulator of Social Housing – called Consumer Standards.

These five Consumer Standards are:

  • Tenant Involvement and Empowerment – How we should communicate with and involve tenants.
  • Tenancy Standard – How we allocate our properties and support our tenants.
  • Home Standard – How we maintain your home.
  • Neighbourhood and community – How we should work with other agencies to manage estates and tackle anti-social behaviour.
  • Value for Money – How we spend your rent money.

As you will see over the next few pages, it’s been a busy year and we’ll give you a run-down of just some of the projects that we’ve been working on, in addition to how we ensure that your homes and neighbourhoods are safe, warm and great places to live.

In previous years, our Annual Report to Tenants has been presented at our Annual Tenant Conference. However, by incorporating this report into In Touch, we hope to make even more Tenants aware of the hard work that is taking place to improve our services to you.

Cllr Steve Scotthorne,
Cabinet Member for Housing

Alison Craig,
Head of Housing

Tenant Involvement and Empowerment Standard

There are many ways in which we communicate with and involve tenants, not only through the day-to-day running of a Housing service, but how we engage with tenants to set our own priorities and ensure that we are providing the level of service that you expect.

There are currently around 1,760 tenants who engage with Bassetlaw District Council Housing in the following ways:

  • Housing Liaison Group
  • Tenant Forum
  • Tenants’ and Residents’ Associations
  • BATRA
  • Tenant Voices
  • Facebook Followers

This year our tenants have involved themselves in the following ways:

  • Mystery shopped the Adaptations Service.
  • New Tenant Voices are now representing the areas of Sturton-le-Steeple, Dunham-on-Trent, Sandy Lane and Manton.
  • We even have new Tenant Voices in some of our Independent Living Centres.

Our Tenant Involvement and Empowerment priorities for next year include:

  • Introduce a new Tenant Consultation Group and carry out a review of Tenant Engagement to improve the ways we communicate with and involve tenants.
  • Undertake a Survey of Tenant Satisfaction to identify areas for improvement.
  • Prepare and issue an Annual Report to Tenants.

Tenancy Standard

This standard looks at how we allocate our properties and support our tenants. As well as week-to-week turn-around of properties, it includes our Supported Housing Service and our work to help some of our more vulnerable tenants to sustain their tenancies.

Demand for Housing

  • There are around 3,300 applicants currently on the waiting list
  • By working with private landlords and our allocations service, we have prevented 162 households from being made homeless
  • Through Homefinder, our online allocations system, 517 Properties have been re-let to new tenants who most need Council Housing

Supported Housing

  • Our Lifeline Service received more than 60,000 calls during 2018/19
  • 5% of those calls were answered in 30 seconds
  • Our tenancy sustainment team has already helped to support 67 households with their tenancy
  • Our Lifeline service also generated £184k of additional income from 1,122 private households that will be reinvested into services for Bassetlaw residents.

Aims for next year

  • Expand our Tenancy Sustainment Service to support more vulnerable tenants in their homes
  • Start to review our Allocations Policy and Choice Based Lettings IT system to ensure we are helping those households who have the greatest need.

Home Standard

This standard looks at how we allocate our properties and support our tenants. As well as week-to-week turn-around of properties, it includes our Supported Housing Service and our work to help some of our more vulnerable tenants to sustain their tenancies.

Demand for Housing

  • There are around 3,300 applicants currently on the waiting list
  • By working with private landlords and our allocations service, we have prevented 162 households from being made homeless
  • Through Homefinder, our online allocations system, 517 Properties have been re-let to new tenants who most need Council Housing

Supported Housing

  • Our Lifeline Service received more than 60,000 calls during 2018/19
  • 5% of those calls were answered in 30 seconds
  • Our tenancy sustainment team has already helped to support 67 households with their tenancy
  • Our Lifeline service also generated £184k of additional income from 1,122 private households that will be reinvested into services for Bassetlaw residents.

Aims for next year

  • Expand our Tenancy Sustainment Service to support more vulnerable tenants in their homes
  • Start to review our Allocations Policy and Choice Based Lettings IT system to ensure we are helping those households who have the greatest need.

Neighbourhood and Community Standard

We do our best to make sure that your neighbourhoods, as well as your homes, are a safe and enjoyable places to live.

As part of our work to improve your neighbourhoods, over the last 12 months we have resurfaced and repaired estate footpaths and created additional parking for tenants.

We also completed a project in Harworth that built 83 new homes, and we are very close to opening a brand new state of the art Independent Living and Extra Care Centre in Worksop called Priory Court.

In partnership with the Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Team, we are tackling low-level and high-level ASB and have dealt with 472 cases.

Our caretakers also work hard to keep your neighbourhoods clean and tidy, and during 2018/19 they cleared 206 tonnes of fly-tipped waste, garden waste and rubbish. They also removed 18 incidents of offensive graffiti.

Aims for next year

  • Carry out a review of the Council’s housing land, garage sites, and other assets and agree an approach to invest in and improve them, or use them to generate additional funds for the housing service.
  • Start to build the first phase of around 120 new homes at Radford Street, Manton
  • Complete and welcome new tenants to Priory Court, Worksop.

Value for Money

The Housing Service’s budget for 2018/19 was just over £27m and there are many ways in which we strive to offer value for money for our tenants.

  • Earlier this year, the Housing Service was brought back under the control of Bassetlaw District Council. As part of this move, savings of £335,000 a year have been identified.
  • During 2018/19 we collected just over £26m in rent, which is 99% of the rent and arrears that were due to be paid to Bassetlaw District Council

Thanks to the work of our Rents Team and Money Advisors who provide budgeting advice and can agree affordable repayment plans should you fall into arrears with your rent.

  • Our current rent arrears are just £245,000
  • We currently have 825 households in receipt of Universal Credit

Aims for next year

  • Review external contracts with a view to bringing work back in house where possible to ensure greater value for money.
  • Continue to identify other areas where we can work more efficiently and reduce costs, which will be re-invested back into services to tenants, e.g. repairs, new housing, estate improvements.

 

 


Last Updated on Wednesday, January 13, 2021