Annual report for residents - Hanover

hanover.org.uk

Annual report for residents - Hanover

Annual report for residents

Our performance 2010/11


Annual report

for residents

Welcome to Hanover’s second annual report for residents. Last year we published a report

which outlined what you felt we were doing well and what we needed to do better. We

also told you our top 10 commitments for the year. This report outlines how we are doing

compared to last year and lets you know what our commitments are for the coming year.

We asked residents what they thought about

last year’s report. We did this by including a

feedback slip at the back of the report. We

also carried out a consultation in July 2011;

in which 237 residents gave us their views.

We asked:

• What do you want to hear about?

• Did you find last year’s report interesting?

• Was it easy to read?

Generally residents were happy with the

layout of last year’s report but felt it was

too long. We also received comments that it

contained too much jargon and not enough

information for homeowners. These views

have been taken into account when writing

this year’s report.

Hanover’s Residents’ Council has also been

involved in the production of this report.

They are a group of 15 residents who meet

with Hanover’s senior management. Their

role is to ensure Hanover takes account of

residents’ views.

2


Acknowledgements

Thank you to all the residents

and staff who appear in this

publication.

All photography used is of Hanover

residents, staff and estates.

Tell us what you think

If you would like to tell us what you

think about this report please contact

the service improvement team at:



Hanover

House, 1 Bridge

Close, Staines, TW18 4TB


01784 446117

@

engagement@hanover.org.uk

Alternative formats

If you would like Hanover’s annual

report for residents in a different

language, in large print or on tape

or CD please contact your estate

manager or your housing manager.

This publication

is printed on paper

sourced from certified

well-managed forests.

Issued on behalf of: Hanover Housing Association – an Exempt Charity, Industrial

and Provident Society No. 16324R, Housing Corporation No. L0071; Hanover

Property Management Limited – Company Limited by Guarantee No. 2850448,

Financial Services Authority Firm Reference Number 312748. Registered Office

for the above: Hanover House, 1 Bridge Close, Staines TW18 4TB.

3


How are we

doing on our top

10 commitments?

Last year we set out lots of things where we knew we could do better. We also prioritised

10 commitments we said we would work on over the last 12 months. Here is our update

on how we are doing. Turn to the back page for details on what we will prioritise over the

next 12 months.

we said we would…

1. Carry out regular surveys

to find out how satisfied

residents are with our services.

2. Make sure residents are

satisfied with how we

handle complaints.

3. Help our staff understand

diversity so our estates are

welcoming to everyone.

what have we done?

We have spent time looking at the best way to do this

and have decided to carry out surveys with homeowners

and rented residents on an annual basis. The first

surveys will be sent in the autumn. We already carry out

surveys for complaints and for repairs and have carried

out a one-off survey on the support that residents would

find useful.

We now carry out satisfaction surveys as part of our

complaints process. Over a 6 month period 75% of

residents who made a complaint were happy with the

length of time it took to receive a response to their

complaint. During the same period 87.5% felt their views

were respected. We want to improve on this and look at

ways we can make the process better for you. We have

also made changes to our procedures to help with this.

Over the last 12 months staff have been trained on

understanding different groups within the community.

We now need to ensure all our estates are welcoming

to all.

4


we said we would…

4. Improve how quickly we

replace older kitchens

and bathrooms.

5. Develop a way to measure how

many repairs are completed

successfully on the first visit.

6. Carry out more detailed

surveys of homeowner estates

to make sure we know what

works are needed longer term.

7. Improve how quickly we let

empty properties.

8. Get better at collecting money

owed to us by residents for

unpaid rents and/or service

charges.

9. Do more work to compare

our service and costs with

other landlords.

10. We need to understand how

well our resident engagement

methods work and identify

whether they represent value

for money.

what have we done?

We have introduced a copayments scheme to share the

costs of new bathrooms and kitchens with residents

who would like to do this work earlier than Hanover

would. We have also put in place contracts across the

country to make savings on the costs of replacing

kitchens and bathrooms which will help us to be able

to do more.

We now record how many repairs were completed

on time. Residents are kept informed via repairs

statements which are issued to each estate twice a year.

Work is well underway in carrying out building surveys

on homeowner estates. This will be completed by

March 2012 and will help inform reserve fund budgets

in the longer term.

We have made changes to our lettings process to

improve how quickly we let empty properties. This

included a review of the lettings policy and procedures.

Financial loss from empty properties was reduced by

£789,000 over the year.

The payments advice team has done a great job

collecting money owed to Hanover. They have managed

to reduce the amount owed by £505,000.

We now regularly compare what we do with other

housing associations. We will continue to monitor

this information and use it to identify further areas

for improvement.

We now carry out an assessment, including value for

money, on all consultations carried out. The results

are regularly reported to the Residents’ Council.

5


Local offer

Helping residents

to live the life

they choose

Last year we said we needed to

get better at being clear about

choices we can offer to residents

and making local agreements

easier to understand.

Residents from Norwich


So what have we done over the last year?

• We have created a clear guide for staff on

the choices we can offer. A resident version

is also available from your estate manager

or housing manager.

• We have produced a help sheet that

describes the choices individuals can make.

It also shows choices that residents can

make together on estates and ones that

Hanover needs to continue to make.

• We have trained staff on choices that can be

made and how to work with residents to help

decide collective issues. We want to make

sure we give residents all the information

needed to make an informed decision.

• Local agreements now include choices that

have been made by residents together on

their estates. We want the local agreement

to be a useful document on estates

providing more information about the

wishes of residents locally.

Facts and figures

Local agreements

Total number

in place:

Reviewed in the

last 12 months:

What we need

to do better

602

433

• We need to continue to support residents

making decisions as a community where

they live. Hanover recognises there is

often no right or wrong way of doing

things. We are here to help you decide.

• We will continue to review local

agreements at all estates making sure

they reflect what has been agreed locally.

6


Tenant involvement

and empowerment

Ways you can

be involved

Last year we said we needed to

get better at a number of things

including improving how we

carry out surveys and answering

queries first time.

Residents from Tadcaster


So what have we done over the last year?

• We have introduced area meetings as a

result of residents’ feedback. A total of 21

meetings took place during the year across

the country with 319 residents attending.

• We have continued to work with local

resident representatives and residents

associations on a wide range of local

issues.

• We have two residents who are Board

members. We also have a Residents’

Council who help to ensure Hanover

listens to residents’ views.

• We are introducing annual satisfaction

surveys with homeowners and tenants. The

first surveys will be sent out in the autumn.

• A customer service information sheet has

been sent to all estates. This includes

details about how to contact us.

• Over the last 12 months staff at St Neots

have had customer service training.

What we need

to do better

• Although we have carried out training

on understanding different groups within

communities we want to ensure residents

feel all our estates are welcoming.

• We are working to improve our customer

service by thinking more about what we

send to residents and the language

we use.

Facts and figures

Number of complaints in the year

Total:

Sent to

373 Ombudsman * : 4

Resolved

at stage 1: 74%

Upheld by the

Ombudsman: 0

Intouch panel

Consultations

632 Members 72 carried out

Hanover on Call

521,732

Calls received

43,478

Calls per month

*

The Housing Ombudsman Service is set up by law to look at

complaints about housing associations.

7


Home

Maintaining your

home - repairs and

planned works

Last year we said we needed to

get better at a number of things

including providing you with

statements about how well

contractors are working at your

estate and improving how quickly

we replace kitchens and bathrooms.

Newnton Court - Hackney


So what have we done over the last year?

• We now provide all estates with details about

how well contractors are working at your

estate. This includes letting you know how

many repairs were completed right first time.

• We have increased the staff in our Technical

Management team and are looking at ways

we can improve how we plan major works

to estates.

• In Hackney we completed all the work

we had promised would be done. We

carried out work on 28 estates including

upgrading common rooms and lounges.

Residents were involved throughout

the project.

• Although major improvements haven’t been

made to the time it takes for us to replace

kitchens and bathrooms we have introduced

copayments. The copayments scheme helps

tenants to buy a new kitchen or bathroom

with Hanover helping towards the cost.

• We have carried out detailed surveys of the

condition of all Hanover’s rented properties.

By spring 2012 we will have informed

residents on rented estates about work

that we intend to do over the next 5 years

through an Estate Investment Plan.

• We are considering ways to fund work to

improve the energy efficiency of homes.

Facts and figures

Repairs

Repairs carried

out on time:

94%

Amount spent on

major works:

£15.1m

Average cost

of a repair:

£114 (£120 in ‘09/‘10)

Amount spent on

responsive repairs:

£4.8m

of residents have rated their

98% contractors satisfactory or better

( * 84.2%) over the last 6 months

Copayments pilot scheme

Kitchens

completed: 41

Bathrooms

completed: 54

*

shows a comparison to other housing associations

What we need

to do better

• Although we have replaced 245 kitchens

and 176 bathrooms over the past year

we still need to continue working to

improve how quickly we replace kitchens

and bathrooms.

• We need to make sure residents are happy

with the quality of repairs that are

carried out.

• We need to provide the Estate Investment

Plans for rented estates and then start

work on these for homeowner estates.

8


Tenancy

Letting properties,

rents and charges

Last year we said we needed to

get better at a number of things

including how quickly we let

empty properties and looking at

how we calculate reserve funds

for homeowners.

Hanover Court - North Cave


So what have we done over the last year?

• We are working to improve the information

we provide to homeowners about their

reserve funds. We are also working to

make sure homeowner estates have

enough money in the reserve fund to

cover work over the next 5 years. We will

be speaking to homeowners about this

when budget meetings are held.

• We have improved how quickly we let

empty properties. Financial losses from

empty properties has reduced from

£2,325,000 in 2009/10 to £1,536,000 in

2010/11. We have reviewed the standard of

properties when ready to let and introduced

ways to help prospective residents view

properties earlier. In retirement housing,

income lost from empty properties has

dropped from 1.9% to 1.2%.

• Since 2010 we have reduced the amount

owed to Hanover by residents for unpaid

rent and service charges from £1,951,000

in 2009/10 to £1,446,000 in 2010/11.

• All lettings enquiries are now being taken by

a new Lettings and Enquiries team. They can

give advice on the services we offer, waiting

lists and what properties are available.

What we need

to do better

• We need to continue to improve how

quickly we let empty properties.

• We are reviewing how we can

help existing residents to move.

Improvements are expected to be

introduced in March 2012.

Facts and figures

Arrears

Amount owed to

Hanover for rent:

Current arrears reduced from:

Empty properties

Time taken to

re-let empty

rented homes:

38.5 days

(40 days in ‘09/‘10)

£1.446m

2.5% in 2009/10 to: 1.8% in 2010/11

Empty properties

as a % of all

housing stock

2%

An

average of: 2.86%

of lettings were made

to BME * residents

* Black and minority ethnic residents

9


Neighbourhood and

community

Working in your

local community

Last year we said we needed

to get better at a number of

things including sharing what

residents are doing on their

estates. We also committed to

being clearer about the choices

residents can make.

Resident from Selby


So what have we done over the last year?

• We have improved how we inform residents

about choices. This might be individually

or collectively by residents on estates. We

have also clarified areas where Hanover

needs to make decisions as a reasonable

landlord and employer.

• We have continued our Greenshoots

programme providing money for

improvements on estates.

• We have continued to support residents

to achieve things locally and publicise

it by producing an annual publication

(Inpractice) showcasing interesting

activities on estates.

• A new Community Links manager will work

with staff to help identify support for local

initiatives.

Facts and figures

Anti-social behaviour

63

Cases of anti-social

behaviour reported

What we need

to do better

Greenshoots

£79,541

Total spent on

Greenshoots projects

£19,885

Total raised

by residents

84

Greenshoots

projects

completed

• Provide more support and expertise to

help residents to be able to do local

initiatives on their estates.

• Continue to share good examples of

what residents are doing on their estates

and in the local community.

Greenshoots

Over the last year residents have used Greenshoots funding for all sorts of projects including

outings, pool tables, BBQs, digital pianos and even a hairdressing salon! If you would like to

find out how your estate can apply for Greenshoots funding, call the engagement team

on 01784 446117.

10


Resident from Hackney

Value for money

How we deliver

cost-effective

services

Last year we said we needed to

get better at a number of things

including introducing different

ways to save money on major

work such as decorating. We also

said we would look at processes

that Hanover carries out to see

if we can save more money.


So what have we done over the last year?

• We have completed all the improvement

work in Hackney as part of the Hackney

Promises project. All works were completed

within budget.

• We carry out value for money assessments

for all consultations carried out.

• We have introduced a better way to get

contractors for major works such as kitchen

and bathroom contracts as well as decorating

contracts. This means technical teams can

deliver planned works more quickly. These

changes have helped save £863,000!

• We are in a good financial position but need

to make sure we continue to provide good

value for money.

• We compare how well we are doing,

in many more areas, with other housing

associations.

• We have introduced a new system to make

it quicker and easier to get prices for major

maintenance work.

• Estate Managers continue to work with

residents to make sure they are claiming all

the benefits they are entitled to.

What we need

to do better

• We need to get better at understanding

how satisfied residents are with the

amount of rent and/or service charges

they pay.

• We are looking to improve the way

contractors can bid for work.

• We need to get better at how we share

and record good value for money

examples.

Facts and figures

Savings achieved

£863,000

saved

By

improving the

way contractors can

bid for major works

Estate Managers have helped residents to claim

£1,015,594

worth of benefits!

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Top 10 commitments that we will prioritise

over the next 12 months

We have told you what we have done over the past year to improve the services we provide to you.

We are committed to carry on improving what we do. Some of the top 10 commitments we made

last year are still important so we will continue to prioritise those commitments. This doesn’t mean

the other areas we know we need to improve will be forgotten but plans to address some areas

may need to wait.

• Improve how we present financial

information to homeowners and make

sure homeowners are collecting enough

money for works on their estate

• Improve our approach to major works on

estates and introduce Estate Investment

Plans showing a 5 year timetable of what

we hope to do

• Improve how we communicate with

residents. Think more about what we send

to residents and the language we use

• Get better at providing answers to

queries promptly

• Carry out regular surveys to find out how

satisfied residents are with our services

• Make sure residents are satisfied with

how we handle complaints

• Help our staff understand the

communities we work in so our estates

are welcoming to everyone

• Improve how quickly we replace older

kitchens and bathrooms

• Improve how we measure how many

repairs are completed successfully on

the first visit

• Do more work to compare our services

and costs with other housing associations

We will continue to report our progress

to the Residents’ Council including what

we need to do better. We’ll keep you

informed of any improvements through

Hanover News, estate meetings and

area meetings.

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