COVID-19 - Restoring our housing repairs service
It is important to make sure that we provide an effective, efficient and safe repairs service.
We are taking into account the latest Government guidance to reinstate our repairs service, so that we only do things when it safe to do so and does not put anyone at risk. In addition, we will take this opportunity to implement improvements as part of our recovery plan.
The dates to reinstate services will be kept under review whilst taking into account any feedback from tenants. It will also depend on the status of the pandemic and any further changes to guidance.
Phase 1 – initial response
Emergency repairs and safety work
Following the initial restrictions, we have continued to deliver emergency and urgent repairs and maintain safety programmes of work. Tenants have been able to request emergency and urgent repairs directly through Customer Services for a same day response. Safety checks to homes have continued where appropriate and non-essential home visits have been replaced with a telephone call or email.
In order to keep everyone safe and reduce the risk of spreading the Covid-19 virus, all existing routine repairs were postponed to stop any unnecessary in-home visits during the first phase of the lockdown. The online repairs portal was suspended to prevent routine repairs being reported that could not be carried out.
Phase 2 – planning recovery
Emergency repairs and safety work
If you have an emergency or require urgent repairs to your home for example; water leaks, blocked toilets, electrical faults or boiler breakdown, please contact us on 01793 445503. We will arrange for these repairs to be carried out as quickly as possible.
This continues to be suspended and we will inform you once we are in a position to resume this service.
Dealing with external repairs that have already been reported
We have restarted external repairs that have already been reported to us and where minimal contact is required for access. This type of work includes roofing, guttering, fencing and paths repairs. You will be contacted directly so we can agree a convenient date and time for repairs to be carried out to your home.
Communal area repairs have also restarted and these include repairs to communal doors, door entry check systems and lighting. You don’t need to do anything other than be mindful of the social distancing rules if you see this type of repair work being carried out.
Essential safety checks
We are planning to undertake gas safety checks to homes where tenants have been shielding due to being in a vulnerable group or over 70 years of age.
We are setting up a major repairs team and will utilise our internal resources from planned works and external contractors to help clear the backlog to deliver the more complex or larger type repairs.
External improvement work has also restarted. This includes the replacement roof and new door entry check programme of works.
Tenants shielding or with underlying health conditions
Tenants will not be expected to have repairs carried out where any family members are showing symptoms or where an individual is shielding, unless it is for a safety repair. In these cases, special precautionary measures will be put in place to minimise the risk of spreading the virus.
We would like to thank you for your continued patience and remind you to help us to maintain social distancing rules when we carry out repairs to your home. Repairs are likely to take longer to plan and carry out due to the extra care needed. We are also looking at using video interaction to help with communication and expect to have this in operation over the next few weeks.