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Ensuring Network Homes is Together with Tenants

25 July 2019

Teresa Burrows

I’ve been a Network Homes tenant for around 30 years and I’ve been an involved resident for 20 of those. I’m a former mental health nurse and I have three children, the youngest of which is 22 and has just moved out.

Teresa Burrows, London Residents Panel Member

I got involved with Network Homes to give other residents a voice as I felt there were many people, particularly older residents or those with disabilities, who may not be in a position to get involved. I’ve been on a number of panels including the one for procurement and appointing new contractors. Currently I’m a member on the London Local Panel.

Getting involved with my landlord in decision making is important because it can help improve services for all residents. But Network Homes and the whole housing sector knows that they need to go much further. Up until now there hasn’t been a unifying strategic charter to make sure all housing associations have the same outcomes in mind when it comes to involving residents. The National Housing Federation (NHF), of which Network Homes is a member, has been looking to change that. They’ve been working with residents and their member housing associations on a new way of working called ‘Together with Tenants’. The plan is to implement a new charter which will provide some consistency across all NHF housing associations.  

Residents themselves are involved in codesigning the new charter and I’ve been to one of many NHF consultation sessions to give my views on the draft proposals. The two-month consultation on these took place earlier this year (between February and April). The NHF spoke to a numerous residents and representative groups, hosted or supported engagement events across the country and held an online consultation.

More than 2,500 people responded to the online consultation, with more than 500 people attending special events. Of the responses the NHF received, three quarters were from residents.  

What is Network Homes doing?

We’re currently waiting for NHF to provide a revised plan and charter, but Network Homes has already started moving forward with many of the actions.

Network Homes has:

  • Started working on a new service offer and recently sent out a survey to residents to get our views on it.
  • Published FRAs for all their buildings over 18 metres and are currently working on a new Building Safety Resident Engagement strategy.
  • Created a new page on their website and uploaded all their KPIs.
  • Run a recruitment drive to recruit more members on to the local panels. They are also setting up a new scrutiny structure and working with panels to identify the best way to feedback to residents.
  • Plans in place to publish a transparency statement on our website along with key development data, financial statements and guides to policies.
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