Thurrock Council to review housing policy

A “thorough and systematic” review of Thurrock Council’s housing service is being undertaken to identify areas which are working well for residents and those where improvements need to be made.The review, announced by Leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder for Housing, Cllr Rob Gledhill, will examine the entire service to ensure it is meeting the needs of residents in the rapidly changing housing environment in Thurrock.The wide-ranging review will also look at the performance of each council contractor and customer satisfaction levels within their work. Tenants and tenants’ groups will be asked their views about the service and will be involved throughout including the planning of improvements.The Council are also undertaking a condition survey of the current housing stock, which will look at all aspects of a cross section of properties to identify what improvements need to be made.The analysis, which will be conducted by an outside expert and overseen by a panel of councillors from all parties, will produce a range of recommendations and an action plan for how they are going to be met.In launching the review, Cllr Gledhill said: “The Housing team provide incredibly important services to residents who are often in very difficult circumstances. Which is why we need to get things right – first time.”I know there are parts of the service which are working well and focussed on tenants. I want to make sure their best practice is shared throughout the service and the whole customer experience is good.”This review and condition survey will help us ensure tenants are getting an excellent service, while we improve the standard of the Council’s huge asset base of properties.Cllr Gledhill continued: “The regulation and law changes which have already come in, as well as those planned for the near future, mean we need to look in detail at whether the current service still meets the needs of residents.”We can’t ignore the issues which have been raised even if they are perceptions rather than reality. This review will help us identify what can be done and work with colleagues in the service to address them.”Without a fundamental review, we will continue to bolt-on changes each time something new comes along and not identify the wholesale improvements needed for tenants. For more information on the Council’s housing service, please go to thurrock.gov.uk/housing

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