You said, we did
We really appreciate your time and that of others in giving us feedback about the services we provide.
You might wonder what we do with all this feedback. Below, you’ll find a list of changes we’ve made as a result of it.
September 2021. As highlighted in our complaints report for 2020/21, we received some complaints and feedback about the time it takes to arrange repairs, repeat visits to complete a repair and the quality of work carried out. We have introduced the ability to book repair appointments through our website, and we now send surveys following all appointments which immediately tells us about the customer experience. We have also published our repairs recovery plan which shows how we’re working to provide repairs more quickly.
Condensation, damp and mould
September 2021. We received feedback through complaints that residents were unclear about how we will help resolve damp and mould issues and were not sure what support we provided or what to expect next. We don’t want any settle resident to live with condensation, damp or mould in their home. We have reviewed how we respond to and deal with cases of condensation, damp and mould and we’ve updated our residents. You can see more details here about the update we published in July. If you have any ongoing concerns about condensation, damp and mould in your property, please report these now using our web form or call us.
September 2021. We received several complaints about the charges included in the annual rent and service charges sent to customers. We have reviewed the way estimated service charges are set and have made changes when setting the 2020-2021 service charge estimates. These are now set in line with the previous years’ actual costs, making them more accurate and removing the high variances leaseholders have faced in the past.
Problems with neighbours and in the neighbourhood
September 2021. We noticed an increase in complaints about how we respond to reports of anti-social behaviour. Through our investigation of these complaints, we saw cases where extra support was needed for vulnerable residents. We have reviewed our anti-social behaviour policy and we worked with residents to agree on what is defined as anti-social behaviour and what is within our remit to manage in line with legislation. We have also created a dedicated team to support residents who are impacted by anti-social behaviour. We have refreshed the information on our website and putting in place additional training for colleagues who work with vulnerable residents. We expect this to be completed by October 2021. We also worked with the Housing Associations Charitable Trust (HACT) to develop a framework to further develop our ability to support customers.
Cleaning and grounds maintenance
September 2021: We received a number of complaints about the quality of grounds maintenance and the frequency of cleaning in communal blocks. A common theme was around timely query handling. We have increased the resource of our estate's team to help improve the way we deliver services. We’re also undertaking a consultation with our customers to help us better understand the services they want to receive and will use feedback from this to shape our future service.
Replacing kitchens, bathrooms and windows
April 2021. Through our big check-in during April, you told us that you'd like more communication about when we'll carry out major maintenance to homes like replacing kitchens, bathrooms and windows. During May we wrote to about 500 residents who were due to have kitchens and bathrooms replaced this year to provide more information on when this work will take place. You can read more including details of our investment in homes over the next 10 years in our results from our latest big check-in article.
Website account access for homeowners
February 2021. Homeowners told us that they'd like the same access to the website as renting customers with the ability to see account data, make payments and report and track repairs. So, we've enabled homeowners to register on the website and access their account from any device.
Repair wait times
December 2020. We received several complaints and other feedback, where you told us that it was taking us too long to fix minor repairs.
So, we now use external contractors as well as our own repairs team. By April 2021 this had brought the average wait time for repairs down from 26 to 18 days and our aim is to reduce it further to 16 days.
When a tenant dies
December 2020. We received some complaints from family members saying that the legal document we send after a tenant dies (asking them to return the property to us) felt cold and unsympathetic in the circumstances.
So, we’ve introduced a pause in the process, where we first call the family personally and explain what will happen next, when and why.
Fixing common heating breakdowns
December 2020. We looked at some of the complaints and feedback we’d received following heating breakdowns and saw that it was taking time to order certain common parts we needed to fix heating breakdowns.
So, we now keep these common parts in stock, meaning we don’t have to order them. This has reduced the time it takes us to fix these types of breakdown.
Being clear about section 20 costs
December 2020. Several homeowners told us that we weren’t being clear about the costs they would be expected to pay for section 20 works or contracts.
So, we’ve changed our internal processes, so that we can provide clearer information to homeowners about the costs and we’ve changed our letter to homeowners to include these details.
Home swapping - cleanliness of properties
December 2020. We received some complaints about the cleanliness of properties that people moved into following a home swap.
Home swaps usually happen on one day, meaning that the property isn’t empty for any period of time enabling us to clean it. So, we’ve added cleanliness to the list of things we check at a property prior to approving the home swap. It’s now a condition that the current tenant cleans the property to our normal standard before we approve the swap. We’ve also made this clear in the letters we send to tenants who have applied to swap homes.
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