East Durham housing association completes repairs in-sourcing

Jul 1, 2019 | Local News

Leading social landlord believe housing has completed the in-sourcing of repairs to its 18,000 affordable homes.

From today (1 July), repairs and maintenance work to 8,000 affordable homes in east Durham will be carried out directly by staff from believe housing.

The move ends a 10-year contract with Morrison Facilities Services and sees almost 80 employees transfer to the organisation. Employees transferred include highly skilled joiners, plumbers and heating engineers, who provide emergency callout cover as well as regular repairs and maintenance services. The team also carry out work to properties before new tenants move in.

Aside from believe housing’s distinctively liveried vans and new uniforms, tenants are not expected to see any immediate changes. The team, and their intimate knowledge of the area, will remain unchanged.

The transfer in east Durham followed an extensive review of service provision and is intended to ensure that believe housing can deliver a more modern and flexible repairs service to its tenants.

All other repairs to believe housing homes are already carried out in-house. 40 employees who previously provided repairs for homes in the west of County Durham were brought in-house in April 2018, to join the long-standing team who maintain properties in the heart of the county. The believe housing apprenticeship programme, which has helped local youngsters into highly-skilled trades jobs throughout the repairs team will also be continued.

Chief Executive of believe housing, Bill Fullen, said: “This is a great move for our tenants. It means that we now have a 200-plus strong workforce at the heart of the organisation with all the skills and knowledge to ensure that repairs can be handled promptly and to a high standard right across our area.

“For believe housing it means that we can respond more proactively than ever to the needs of our tenants and continue our investment in skills and training within the region.

“We’d like to thank Morrison Facilities Services for the work they’ve done in east Durham over the last 10 years and the service they’ve offered to thousands of homes in that time.”

Almost 64,000 repairs are carried out on believe housing properties each year and in its most recent annual survey, 84.7% of people were satisfied with the service; a +2.7% increase on the previous year.