- Date: 03/11/2023
Resident perspective - an honest insight into last month’s meet the regulator session
Last month, Honeycomb Group resident Allan attended the Social Housing Regulator 'meet the regulator' session. He has shared an honest insight into the session and four key takeaways.
- Should consumer regulation standards become priority?
Whilst most residents live in a community that fits their needs, the session showed that this isn’t the case for all. The main themes preventing residents from living in a property and place they’re proud to call home was anti-social behaviour and the cost-of-living crisis. Ever increasing energy costs are putting financial pressure on many and preventing some from keeping their homes warm.
On the other hand, residents are also finding it harder to get in touch with their housing provider contact centres. This is causing a lack of communication which is preventing anti-social behaviours and other concerns being resolved in a timely manner.
As much as residents welcome the standards, we would hate to see important services like the above fall behind.
- Consumer regulation standards shouldn’t bring financial strain.
There was financial concern when it came to standards and where housing providers will find this significant funding. The main worry was increased rent, which as mentioned above, would have a detrimental effect upon many residents. We thought the standards were presented well but there wasn’t enough information around the source of funding. Some further information around funding provisions for future schemes (in particularly highly topical climate related schemes) would be interesting to see too.
- Monitoring housing provider performance needs to be clear.
It was said within the meeting that transparency was to be a key factor and that residents will be able to monitor their providers performance against the standards. This will be fantastic but further information and clarity on how we will do this is needed.
- Resident engagement could be increased with wider feedback methods.
We shared feedback around survey methods and the need for them to be accessible and without repercussions. I think the regulator appreciated this and that a further emphasis around online, phone, paper and anonymous surveys is needed.
Overall, it was fantastic to see residents expressing their thoughts directly with the regulator, and being able to have such open, honest dialogue. I am delighted to have had the opportunity to share my personal feedback and hope this is just the beginning when it comes to increased resident engagement with the regulator and wider housing sector.