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Archive for tag: housing quality

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    [submitted by Lynne Palmer, Perth]

    There should be something in the Charter re.

    1 Getting officers & staff to implement everything in the Charter.

    2 " " " " " keep to the Charter.

    3 How staff are at the "coal face" & in one to one situations. It's about the way we are treated; there could be something in the Charter.

    4 What about loop-holes caused by the way we might be treated e.g. a prospective tenant told the council he didn't want a bedsit flat, then he ended up in one. How did this happen? There should be something in the Charter to protect our rights.

    5 Staff don't understand about true participation, they do participation to fit their idea of it e.g. rent setting. ( pages 11 & 20 of Discussion Paper ).

    6 Quality-- how can you talk about good quality housing when people are living in bedsits & bedsit/kitchenettes? The Charter Discussion Paper mentions the SHQS on pages 13 & 21; but where can we contribute or give our opinions about the type of housing offered to us as tenants or the type/style of housing being built?

    7 Stigma-- it's always 'hovering about', there should be something in the Charter.

    8 Equalities-- if officers, staff & services did not stigmatise people we would be getting our human rights met & the equalities issue would be met also.

    From Ian Spence, Social Housing Division - 23/05/2011
    Tagged as: customer service, housing quality, equalities, allocations

  • 0Like

    [submitted by P.C.]

    You asked for comments. Our housing association has just passed to us an outline of what the charter will try to do to improve equality, amongst other things.

    Some comments for you to peruse -

    There may well be performance standards that housing officers have to adhere to, but I can assure you that there is not enough overseeing done of our housing officer by our housing association. Our housing officer is never seen in the building and is merely reactive, instead of being proactive. Many tenants do not pay any attention to her letters informing them of how and when they have breached their tenancy agreement and this is not followed up. Regular estate walkabouts should be brought in to force and there should be unannounced building inspections to keep an eye on things at regular intervals. If anything is seen, then the door should be knocked on and the individual dealt with on the spot, completely out of the blue. Letters are frequently not replied to, or you have to wait at least 3 weeks for a reply, from the housing officer.

    The repairs centre is also slow to get back to a tenant who has reported a fault. I would expect to be contacted within 48 hours, but this is not the case, so sometimes up to 3 phone calls have to be made to get someone out to fix a repair. A landlord should also provide a handyman service to his tenants - some properties have very high ceilings, light flexes are too short and impossible to reach to change a light bulb, for example, or to change curtains, or put up a curtain rail. Tenants should not be expected to have family or neighbours to do these jobs for them. It should not depend on your old age or your disability to get this kind of service from a social landlord.

    Homes should indeed be clean and tidy at the point of entry, but this is not happening either. The housing association I belong to gives tenants a decoration voucher and expects them to do the decoration and cleaning up for them!

    The local Council is not allocating homes fairly in my opinion. There are far too many people living in properties that are far too big for them. Their families have moved on and those of us who really need a larger property simply cannot get it, not even after several years of being on the waiting list. Those with the bigger properties are often telling lies on the council tax registration form and the council does not check the information out. This is costing the council a great deal of unnecessary money in housing benefit payouts. These people just refuse to move on. They should be made to move on to a smaller property - with no cash incentive! The council believes too easily what it is told. Many people register as homeless and they are nothing of the sort! Many tenants pretend they are separated from partner or husband because they refuse to give up the tenancy of their own 2- or 3-bed flat and because they can squeeze out from the housing benefit office a lot more money, but it is all a pretence. Not enough investigation is being done by the council to ascertain the real truth. The only people who seem to be getting re-housed quickly are genuinely homeless people and lots of foreigners from eastern Europe who have never paid into the system. More fairness to our own people needed!

    Landlords need to be much firmer regarding anti-social behaviour! It causes loss of income, deterioration of health and makes it very difficult for tenants to move house away from such a troublesome building, as I have experienced myself over the past 5 years. Because the housing association was so lax in dealing with anti-social behaviour, from 2 neighbours, these problems went on and on for over 5 years! No amount of complaining improved the situation and indeed there is still no monitoring that I can see of this neighbour still misbehaving, so the situation is still going on! Tenants are fed up with such poor service! What are tenancy agreements for? A waste of paper!

    A probationary period of at least 1 full year should be brought in for new tenancies. The population in our town centres is far too mobile and it is difficult for the authorities to trace where these tenants have gone to to retrieve money owed to them. Tenants should be evicted more easily. There are far too many excuses found to give anti-social tenants a second or third chance, making other tenants' lives a misery for far too long. The police are not robust enough in their actions.

    There needs to be much more customer participation in the monitoring, assessing and reporting on the quality of services received from the landlord, and on the quality of the service provided by the individual housing officer.

    From Ian Spence, Social Housing Division - 23/05/2011
    Tagged as: repairs and maintenance, customer service, housing quality, anti-social behaviour, customer participation, allocations

    1 comment

  • 3Likes

    houseing that is of a high quality build with a good infastructure of community resorces is crittical. homes that are energy effisiant and continue to be so that are well maintained and structurly sollidwith plenty ventalation and are free of damp rott and condensation

    anti soucial behaviour neads to have toughfer and quicker resalutions to avoid the deteriation of the victoms health and life quality giveing better and stronger support through out the full prosses and beyond.

    houseing services and management that communicates well with tennants in a way that both partys are able to work together should be developed from the start of tennancey with tennants haveing plenty and choice of oppertunity to have say and develop the services thay recive both localy and as an organisation.the areas should be clean tidey and maintained to a high standerd and assesments made by both tennants and staff and maintained to the leval agreed with tennants at a walk abought,communitys should be safe and freindly and free of discrimanation and this should be well managed to a standard that meets the regulations and customers expectations.

    houseing allocation should be of choice base with a 6 month extndebal probation period which can be re asighned if nessesary with consultation with external factors to implament a safe gaurd for both partys and the sustainabilaty of the community, to allow allocations to be made there shoul be a better system of salecting the tennant allocated to a property from the choice based system to allow the tennancey and community to be sustainable and a safe and secure and mostly happy enviroment for people to live so that a community is a place where people can live comfertable with out creating gehcos all new tennances during the probnatioon period should have support or assistance to establish a tennancey durring this time as quite a number of new tennanceys are on tight budgets more should be done across the board to support this period to establish tennanceys and should be avalible prior to entaring the property to ensure the tennancey starts on a sustanable footing.

    good value for money is a must where transparancey is a key factor and shown in plain terms and the services that are beeing payed for meet the customers expectations to which the customer should have input and be able to feedback on.

    homeless should have the same standard of tempary acommodation as perminant tennanceys and the same choices with a good transitional period to allow the change from temparary accomodation to permanant home and they should be ennuf time for them to establish there perminant home with general basic neads facilatys to beable to sustain the new tennancey (ie furnish and carpet) houseing officers should always identifie when signing a new tennant up ensure thay are able to get this in place or give support to do this its all to quick at the molment that tennances start and thay have to move in with out resorces which causes hardship and strain on the extended community.

    repairs and mantanance should always be of good quality with well trained and experianced staff and traidsmen with good knollage of all resorces and knollage f the homes thay work in and the tennancey neads.

    support neads to be more esaly avalible and less difficult to obtain young tennants should be assigned tennancey support automaticaly to establish there homes from before beeing allocated this hellping to sustain there tennancey but lead a more independant life and fit in to the community and get a good relationship with the community this also may nead to be ongoing for people who are vulnerable so should not be time limmeted.

    all houseing providers should be transparent to the customer and the regulators in all areas tennants should have good resorces to be able to asses the houseing services in all areas and be able to see where there rent money is beeing spent

    From 9/05/2011
    Tagged as: value for money, communication, housing quality, anti-social behaviour

  • 0Like

    I live in a Housing Association flat in a "Double Flood Risk" area , as designated by SEPA, in Leith harbour.
    I live on the basement/ground floor, below road level, and I would like to move out. I understand that there are some flood defence improvements planned higher up the river, but the sea is still a threat. The people living on the low levels of the flats are generally disabled people; those needing easy access, not the type of people who would find it easy to react quickly to a sudden flood. I have noticed that blocks that have been built recently have shops or car parks on the ground floors. There are some low banks in the harbour which would easily breach with only a small rise in water level. I propose that tenants living in flood risk areas be given a type of priority on the housing list, so that they may be able to move before disaster occurs. We have seen how floods occur around the world, recently. L. Healey

    From Miss Lynda Healey, Tenant - 21/04/2011
    Tagged as: housing quality

  • 0Like

    [Submitted by Cait Ni Cadlaig by email]


    After April 2015 I expect that if an elderly or disabled person is being allocated a property that a visit with a disability trained (preferably a disabled person) officer be arranged to ensure that the property is suitable, IE, shower if necessary is useable or indeed if necessary, installed before the person moves in. The heating is suitable and not of the old type. Most disabled /elderly people need extra heating. The old type (back boilers etc) are not affordable. Many risk the possibility of Hypothermia because of fear of not being able to pay. This is a health issue as well as a housing issue.

    From Ian Spence, Social Housing Division (admin) - 3/03/2011
    Tagged as: housing quality

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