Repairs, maintenance and dealing with anti-social behaviour are the most important social landlord services. This was a key finding from a report published today on the views and priorities of the Scottish Housing Regulator’s National Panel of Tenants and Service Users.
More than 300 people joined the National Panel during its first year of operation. The Regulator set up the Panel in early 2013 as a new way to help it understand the opinions and experiences of tenants and others who use social landlords’ services.
The Panel also cited value for money, responsiveness to individuals’ needs and communication as important aspects of how landlords provide services. The majority of Panel members felt well informed about their own landlord’s performance and had a strong interest in seeing performance information.
The National Panel’s feedback is already shaping how the Regulator operates. Iain Muirhead, the Regulator’s Director of Strategy and Communications, explained: “We want our regulatory approach to be informed by feedback from people who use landlords’ services. The National Panel is one way we can do this. Its first year has been very successful. The Panel’s views on service priorities have helped shape our new Landlord Reports. We are developing a programme of thematic inquiries, and feedback from the National Panel will influence the areas we will examine through this work.”
“We want to make sure that the National Panel continues to reflect views from a broad range of people who use social landlords’ services. The Panel is always open to new members, who take part in a small number of surveys and discussions during the year.” To join or find out more you can contact Craigforth (who manage the Panel on the Regulator’s behalf) on 0800 0272245 or go to www.bit.ly/nat-panel.
Today also sees the publication of separate research by the Regulator into the service priorities of Registered Tenant Organisations (RTOs) across Scotland. RTOs see repairs and maintenance as the most important landlord services, and the overall findings of the survey are similar to those of the National Panel.
The Regulator engages with tenants and service users in a number of ways, including by meeting regularly with members of the nine Regional Networks of tenant organisations.
- The Scottish Housing Regulator was established on 1 April 2011 under the Housing (Scotland) Act 2010. Its objective is to safeguard and promote the interests of tenants and others who use local authority and RSL housing services. The Regulator operates independently of Scottish Ministers and is accountable directly to the Scottish Parliament. It assumed its full regulatory responsibilities on 1 April 2012. The Regulator consists of the Chair and seven Board members. More information about the Regulator can be found on its website at www.scottishhousingregulator.gov.uk
- SHR regulates around 180 registered social landlords and the housing activities of 32 local authorities.
- The Regulator’s research into the service priorities of Registered Tenant Organisations was part of a broader research project looking at stakeholders’ views about how SHR communicates. The Regulator will publish that full research report, including details of the methodology, by the beginning of October.
- As well as looking at service priorities, during its first year the National Panel provided feedback on how SHR communicates. The Regulator will publish a report covering this topic at the same time as it publishes the research report described at note 3.
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