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Annual review for residents 2010/11

“Where did my money go?” An emergency repair costs

£66.92 on average


to maintain communal grounds such as cutting grass and hedges


responsive repairs

A new bathroom costs

£2,900 on average

1,771 households a  re living in homes too large for their needs

Tel: 0300 555 0500 Email: Web: Minicom: 01245 613188 Email: Fax: 01245 613001 Visit: Atholl House, 65a Duke Street, Chelmsford, CM1 1LW Write to: Myriad House, 23 Springfield Lyons Approach, Chelmsford, CM2 5LB Please contact us if you would like a copy of this document in large print, on CD or in another language. আপিন যিদ ei নিথিটর eকিট কিপ বড় akেরর ছাপায়, িসিড-েত aথবা aনয্ eকিট ভাষায় েপেত চান, aনুgহ কের আমােদর সােথ েযাগােযাগ ক�ন। 倘若您需要本擋以大字體、音頻格式(CD)或另外一種語言提供,請聯絡我們。 Proszę się z nami skontaktować, żeby otrzymać ten dokument w wersji dużym drukiem, na płycie CD  lub w innym języku.   

A routine repair costs

£97.63 on average

16,500 people living in 8,085

registered to move to a family home

residents aged over 51

homes throughout Essex

A new kitchen costs £4,600 on average

An urgent repair costs


2,910 households

200 households


Services for

Bu belgeyi büyük boyutlu bask olarak, CD ortamnda veya başka bir dilde edinmek istiyorsanz  lütfen bizimle irtibata geçin. 

£78.42 on average

Evicting households for antisocial behaviour

have someone with a disability

143 complaints, 740 compliments


Evicting households for rent arrears

£7.5 million

o  n modernisations, planned and recurring (cyclical) repairs


Investigating antisocial behaviour issues

About this report

Antisocial behaviour

Homes Chelmsford 1 1-2 2338 5 160 3-4 2105

We owned 8,085 homes across Essex. Demand for affordable housing far outweighs supply. Key to map One or two-bed 1-2 house or flat Three or four-bed 3-4 house or flat Five-bed house 5

The group of residents who created this report

“We created this report - from choosing the words and information to the design and layout. The aim is to tell you how CHP performed between April 2010 and March 2011. The numbers in this report are the final figures reported to their Board and regulators as at 31st March 2011. If you want more detail and comparisons to last year please contact CHP for a copy of the full report.”

Uttlesford 1-2 98 3-4 41 3 1 18

Epping Forest Rochford


New homes expected in the next two years

Brentwood 1-2 37 3-4 19 Thurrock 1-2 62 3-4 12

We have 1,771 single people or couples living in homes too large for their needs. We have 200 households registered to move to a family house. As family homes rarely become available, we were only able to move 40 households registered for a transfer into a family property last year. To encourage residents living in family homes too large for their needs to move, we operate an incentive scheme

electrics and severe leaks. The average cost of an emergency repair is £66.92 (including labour). Urgent repairs are those that are inconvenient but there is no immediate health or security risk such as leaking pipework. The average cost of an urgent repair is £78.42 (including labour). Routine repairs are those that do not cause an immediate inconvenience or health and safety risk - joinery repairs for example. The average cost of a routine repair is £97.63 (including labour). Modernisations We spent £1.6 million on modernisation works, such as new kitchens and bathrooms: • 154 new kitchens fitted; • 76 new bathrooms fitted; • 422 heating systems improved. We also spent £2.2 million on repairs we have to carry out on a recurring basis such as gas and electric testing and external decorating. £3.7 million went on planned repairs, such as improving heating systems, door entry systems and replacing flooring in communal areas, as well as replacing fencing and paths. How have residents made a difference? A review of the repairs policy with residents has resulted in new appointment times which are more convenient for single, working parents.

688 8



Colchester 1-2 95 3-4 28 126 Harlow

Repairs and modernisations We carried out 19,451 responsive repairs during the last year. 2,635 of the 2,648 emergency repairs were carried out within target (24-hours). 13 jobs were late. 8,205 of the 8,275 urgent repairs were carried out within target (five calendar days). 70 jobs were late. 8,397 of the 8,528 routine repairs were carried out within target (21 calendar days). 131 jobs were late. The reasons for missing these targets include issues such as being called away on more serious jobs, staff sickness, and minor errors in the recording of jobs. The top five most common repairs are: 1. Adjusting doors; 2. Fixing windows; 3. Fixing taps; 4. Fixing toilet cisterns; 5. Removing or repairing locks. 12,034 of the total repairs were carried out by our in-house teams. 10,798 of them were completed at the first visit. We had to revisit 1,236 of them. The main reasons for this were: • We needed to inspect the job first; • We didn’t have the right materials with us (many new-build properties have non-standard fittings); • The fault was more serious than originally thought. Emergency repairs are those that were unexpected and could cause serious structural damage or be a danger to health or safety such as dangerous

Braintree 1-2 63 3-4 38


Allocated for older people Sheltered accommodation

1236 (387 one or two-bed flats, 849 bungalows) 954 (including 112 bungalows)





Maldon 37

Tendring 1-2 49 3-4 26 1 5 157



Basildon 1-2 2 3-4 2


called SpaceSaver. £1,000 was paid for every bedroom that residents gave up when they moved to a smaller home. Only 12 people took us up on this last year. We’re improving our offer and now pay £1,500 per bedroom as well as paying for the cost of removals, disconnection and reconnection of appliances, redirecting post and up to £1,000 for decorating.


Castle Point 17

How have residents made a difference? We now gather details about an applicant’s medical condition at the first assessment as a result of a complaint. This makes it more convenient for the resident as they don’t need a second appointment.

The tables below show the five most common antisocial behaviour and estate management issues reported to us in 2010/11 compared to 2009/10. Antisocial behaviour Noise Household pets Harassment and verbal abuse Domestic abuse Youth nuisance

2009/10 2010/11 253 205 61 85 96 84 35 41 27 28

Estate management Untidy gardens Vehicle nuisance Rubbish/fly-tipping Communal area miss-use (smoking, fire hazards for example) Communal area cleaning

2009/10 2010/11 44 49 46 46 105 42 64 35

Antisocial behaviour issues reported Estate management issues as reported

2009/10 2010/11 513 436 484 375

We take all antisocial behaviour seriously and will support you to resolve any problems. We can only take action if a resident breaks the rules of the tenancy. We can coordinate a range of other agencies to help. These include:

Our residents 12.5% (903) aged 51-60 years; 13.8% (996) aged 61-70 years; 13.2% (955) aged 71 - 80 years; 11.9% (857) aged 81 - 90 years; 2.9% (209) aged over 91 years. We can adapt homes to meet individual needs – see the ‘Extra support’ section for more details. How have residents made a difference? We changed our cleaning schedule based on comments received about the standard. Locks on entrance doors have also been changed so that residents cannot accidentally lock one another out.

Extra support We want to deliver fair services to all and make sure everyone has equal access to them regardless of race, age, religious belief, gender, disability or sexuality. Over one third of our homes (2,910) have someone with a disability living in them. Of these: • 1,548 have physical or mobility impairment; • 416 have a hearing impairment; • 480 have a mental health issue;

• 218 have a visual impairment; • 148 have a learning difficulty; • 47 have a speech impairment. We support people with additional needs in various ways: • Adapting homes for specific needs. We carried out: 574 minor adaptations such as grab rails and level taps; 21 major adaptations such as fitting stair lifts and level access showers.


• A mediation service for issues such as noise nuisance – talking it through with an impartial third party often works best; • Essex Social Services to safeguard vulnerable adults.

• Essex Police on all crimes committed from the property as well as race and hate crime and domestic violence;

Older person’s services Our 24 sheltered schemes have 954 self-contained homes. To live in a sheltered scheme, residents must be over 60 or over 50 and receiving disability living allowance. Homes within sheltered schemes are all linked to the emergency alarm system and provide peace of mind that residents can live independently and access help at the touch of a button if needed. Residents benefit from a visit by one of our scheme managers. We have another 1,236 homes allocated for older people, which means they may be adapted for those with a disability or linked to our emergency alarm system if required by the resident. To qualify for these homes, residents must be aged over 50.


Customer care and communication We are pleased that the number of compliments we get far outweighs the complaints. However, we don’t always get it right and recognise that your comments can help us improve. The table below shows how many compliments and complaints we received compared to the previous year. Complaints Compliments

2009/10 2010/11 229 143 836 740

The three main categories for complaints were: • Poor communication (24) • Staff attitude (17) • Delivery of a service (17) The three main categories for compliments were: • Delivery of a service (384) • Staff attitude (167) • Quality of work (73) Our complaints process allows you to elevate your issue to a maximum of three levels that are reviewed by increasingly more senior management.

If, after all stages, a resident is not satisfied it can be taken to the independent Housing Ombudsman. Three complaints were referred to the Housing Ombudsman last year but none of these were upheld. Last year we established our scrutiny panel. Members inspect our services to ensure our residents receive a consistent and high level of service. How have residents made a difference? We introduced a new telephone line (0300 555 0500) after lots of residents told us they thought a standard rate telephone number was important, which means callers are charged a set rate regardless of whether they are calling from a mobile phone or landline. And our new website provides residents with access to information about their home and tenancy - account balance for example. Register today!

• We currently provide a discretionary • Co-ordinating other agencies to provide relevant support; gardening and decorating service to those with a disability or aged over 70. How have residents made a 269 people used the gardening difference? Our website offers a service at a cost of £61,600. range of tools that make it easier 87 people used the decorating for those with disabilities to use. service last year. For example, read-aloud software • Proving our publications in large for those with visual impairments. print, as an audio CD or in another language;

The table below shows what we can do and how many times we took official action against people in 2010/11 compared to 2009/10. Type Referrals to mediation service Cautions Notice of Seeking Possession served Referrals to care and support agency Acceptable Behaviour Contracts/Agreements Tenancy demotions Notice of Seeking Possession granted Evictions Injunctions (instructing culprits not to shout, swear, or cause a nuisance to neighbours for example) Starter tenancies extended Management moves agreed How long the case takes to resolve depends on lots of factors such as the agencies involved - every case is different. We must also allow the person time to change their behaviour. Our response times are: • 24-hours for incidents such as domestic abuse and hate crime – we achieved this for all of the cases that were reported to us; • Three working days for youth nuisance incidents – we achieved this for 565 out of 568 cases that were reported to us; • Five working days for incidents such as criminal damage, alcohol and drug related nuisance – we achieved this for 29 of the 30 cases that were reported to us.

2009/10 2010/11 17 88 48 69 59 61 28 14 8 12 6 12 9 10 5 9 9 8 2 6

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We resolved 725 (89.5%) out of the 811 cases at the first stage (without legal action) last year. In the previous year we dealt with more cases resolving 869 (94.7%) of the 918 cases at the first stage. How have residents made a difference? Although happy with the handling of the case, residents often commented they wanted more updates whilst the case was on-going – we now provide this.

Money matters Our income of £34m resulted in a surplus of £706,000 in real cash terms. The surplus will be spent on improving existing homes and services, and providing more new affordable homes. For example, the surplus has already contributed to a spend of £850,000 to upgrade heating systems and £400,000 on replacing kitchens and bathrooms since March 2011. We also saved over £400,000 by putting value for money at the heart of everything we do. However, the

full value of these savings won’t be achieved until 2013. For every £1 charged in rent, we collected 98p and are in the top 5% of comparable organisations. We take a firm but fair approach to rent arrears with an emphasis on supporting residents to maintain their tenancy. However, without a commitment to clear arrears we will start legal action to recover the debt and possibly the property. We evicted 12 households for rent arrears last year.

Households evicted for rent arrears Number of households in rent arrears Average arrears Total rent arrears (including unsettled housing benefit claims and arrears from previous year)

2009/10 2010/11 18 12 1,790 1,314 £257 £347 £460,000 £456,000

Looking forward to 2017 The main priorities will include: • Being a good landlord and making sure we get services right rather than expanding what we offer; • Improving how we involve residents; • Recruiting more women to our board; • Using new technology to help us to work smarter and improve communications with residents; • Improve access to new build homes for existing tenants; • Getting residents views on whether we should help them try to get back into work; • Giving more choice of housing and tenancy types.


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