Consultation is now closed for 2014/15 – thanks for all responses.

Customers are currently being invited to submit questionnaires to the Association as part of our budget setting process.

At this time of year we start to plan ahead and before the end of February 2014, our governing Board will approve a final budget for the coming year. Part of this process allows us to seek views from our residents on what we are proposing. While we are committed to providing value for money and quality of services, we also understand the difficult economic climate.

We have to cover our operating costs particularly in relation to our future planned maintenance programme. We are currently consulting tenants on a 3.1% rent increase, based on November’s CPI rate of 2.1% plus 1%. We plan to spend over £800,000 on repairs and investment, and we’re currently tendering our void and repairs contract to appoint one single contractor to complete our repairs contract.

We are also investigating the costs to deliver some new affordable housing in Darnley Road given that grant subsidy was recently increased. We are also installing a new computer system to provide better services for the longer term – increasingly technological improvements will make for better services both internally and externally to our customers but this is a big exercise and we plan to ‘go live’ on 1st April 2014.

Proposed welfare changes continue to present challenges to our customers and we are pleased that we will have additional staff resources following a successful bid to the Big Lottery. Two new posts for income sustainment and welfare advice and also an energy adviser will be in place from early April 2014. We would welcome views on our plans for the coming year so please get in touch with us and complete the questionnaire, returning this in the freepost envelope provided. We will meet with our Tenant Scrutiny Panel in February 2014 too to discuss and get feedback on our plans.

The consultation has now closed but we still welcome your views – use the box below to give us feedback. Thanks again to 167 tenants who returned the questionnaire to us in February 2014.