Wealden District Council
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Local Offers 2022 To 2023

Our service commitments to you

Also known as Local Offers 2022 – 2023

Once again these service commitments have been developed as a result of the Council’s work with tenants and builds upon our previous local offers.

These service commitments will be monitored and we report back to you on them at the end of each financial year via Threshold and online at www.wealden.gov.uk/local offers.

The following service commitments apply to all Wealden District Council general needs and retirement living tenants unless otherwise stated.

Regulation of social landlords is done via a Regulatory Committee within Homes England.

Regulation of social landlords comes under two headings of Consumer or Economic.  Local Authorities are not regulated on the economic standards (Governance and Financial Viability, Value for Money and Rent) but are regulated on the four consumer standards.

Consumer standards:

  • Tenant Involvement and Empowerment
  • Home
  • Tenancy
  • Neighbourhood and Community

Most of our service commitments come under one of the four consumer standards. The ones that do not have been included in the “Other” section.

Tenant involvement and empowerment standard

All tenants, Retirement Living Leaseholders and Right to Buy Leaseholders

  1. Encourage you to give us feedback through surveys or through housingfeedback@wealden.gov.uk
  2. Collate and publish feedback on our website and summarised versions in our newsletters.
  3. Work with you through the Complaints and Customer Feedback Review Panel to ensure that we learn from customer feedback, including complaints and performance data to ensure continuous improvement of our services.
  4. Train and support you to deliver one scrutiny review during 2022/23.
  5. Providing you with a Tenant Involvement Recognition Scheme to support you to get involved.
  6. Pilot an Annual Award Scheme in 2022/23 to celebrate the work that individuals or groups make to our estates or the lives of other residents.
  7. We will actively promote our Tenant Involvement Brochure enabling you to let us know how you want to be involved.
  8. We will provide free training to enable you to actively engage, if needed.
  9. We will provide you with a monthly e-newsletter and a bi-annual hard copy newsletter called Threshold to ensure regular communication and feedback to you.
  10. We will actively promote all consultations, being clear about what can and can’t be influenced. Ensuring adequate time is allowed for you to respond. We will always feedback the results of all consultations and what has happened as a result of what you said.

Retirement Living tenants and leaseholders

  1. Continue to work with you to support increased activities in courts, where there is a demand.
  2. Continue to support the formation of court based residents groups where there is demand.
  3. Using technology once broadband is installed to facilitate ‘networking’ and ‘knowledge sharing’ between courts, where residents would like to do this.

Home standard

Tenants Only

  1. When carrying out kitchen replacement works we will give you a choice over your kitchen units, worktops and flooring covers from a pre-selected range.
  2. When carrying out bathroom modernisations we will give you a choice of vinyl floor coverings to choose from.
  3. Carry out electrical safety checks every 5 years and on every change of tenancy.
  4. To ensure that you receive high quality services and/or works we will require our contractors to survey you on the service/works that you receive from them. We will also undertake random checks of completed works and carry out our own satisfaction surveys.

Tenants, Retirement Living leaseholders and Right to Buy leaseholders

  1. We will be continuing to ensure your safety with a programme to replace all front doors in flatted accommodation with new fire doors, where the flat entrance door opens onto a communal area.

Tenancy Standard

Tenants only

  1. We will work with you to explore how we can improve and expand upon the information provided on empty properties when they are advertised.
  2. We will seek to provide the opportunity to allow successful housing applicants to view a property before it is vacated.
  3. We will complete the review the use of Flexible Fixed Term tenancies to ensure they meet both the needs of our tenants and of the Council.
  4. We will support those who need it, to access suitable housing for your needs. Including addressing under occupation through the use of the Transfer Incentive Scheme, over-crowding through transfers, moving to age-restricted, Retirement Living or extra care housing or through the use of aids and adaptations.
  5. We will pilot weekly online surgeries with Housing Officers and promote these to you.
  6. We will support tenants who are at risk of losing their property due to rent arrears of other breach of tenancy conditions and that engage with us, to receive support and take action to remedy these breaches. This may be done through intensive support, referral to other agencies, partnership working or other means.

Tenants and Retirement Living leaseholders

  1. We will retain a dedicated Retirement Living Court management service.
  2. The Council will continue to invest in council homes to rent, as well as shared ownership.

Neighbourhood and community standard

Neighbourhood as a place to live Tenants, Retirement Living Leaseholders and Right to Buy Leaseholders

  1. Carry out estate walkabouts to ensure our estates are well maintained. Exploring the opportunity to introduce them in areas not currently covered.
  2. Actively promote walkabouts and encourage residents to attend.
  3. Employ Estate Wardens across the District to promote safer and cleaner communities on Council estates.
  4. Work with residents through Resident Groups, Community Representatives, Estate and Block Champions to monitor grounds maintenance or cleaning contracts and ensure any estate related issues such as dumped rubbish, graffiti etc. are dealt with.
  5. Work with local residents including through Resident Groups or Community Representatives to explore community use for small pieces of HRA land – pocket gardens, wild flower gardens etc. to improve the environment for local communities.
  6. Work with Resident Groups, Community Representatives and local residents to utilise the Community and Environmental budget to undertake improvement works in line with the eligibility criteria.

Other – Skills, Training & Information

Tenants, Retirement Living Leaseholders and Right to Buy Leaseholders

  1. Continue to help you get online in partnership with other organisations, through events, information and access to computers, training and much more. Ensuring these opportunities are widely promoted.
  2. Continue to run the Street Learning project and widely promote the free courses on offer, both in-person and online.
  3. We will arrange and provide a range of events for you. Ensuring that these are well publicised.
  4. We will explore what outreach services can be provided to you.

Other – Health & Wellbeing

Tenants, Retirement Living Leaseholders and Right to Buy Leaseholders

  1. We will work with the Community and Regeneration team and partners to provide Health and Wellbeing opportunities to you and promote as widely as possible.