Brighton & Hove hits 100% Decent Homes target
Council homes in Brighton and Hove have reached the 100% Decent Homes target with modern kitchens and bathrooms.
In 2009 only 51% of council homes met the standard, introduced by the Government to improve the quality of social housing.
Since then 1,194 new bathrooms and 2,895 new kitchens have been installed, and 4,448 energy efficient boilers have been fitted, significantly reducing residents heating bills. The council has also fitted 5,552 new doors and rewired 1,533 properties as part of the ongoing housing investment programme.
Cllr Bill Randall, chair of the housing committee, said:
“This is testament to a huge amount of work in close consultation with tenants, across the council, and with our partners Mears, who is responsible for the repairs and maintenance of our 12,000 council homes and PH Jones who carry out gas maintenance and installations in the west of the city.
“Mears have brought a number of improvements to the service since it began a 10 year contract 4 years ago, most recently re-organising the call centre to handle calls faster and more efficiently. As part of the contract Mears has also created 67 apprenticeships for local people.
“However, we recognise there is still further work to do: we are progressing our investment plans at pace, improving our repairs service and continuing to ensure that we maintain and exceed this standard.”
Janet Parker, a council tenant for 38 years, is delighted with her new fitted kitchen.
“The Mears worker did a fantastic job because the old kitchen was falling down. It’s well organised with the washing machine and fridge having their own plug sockets so they are out the way.
“The cupboards are beech and the worktop is black so it’s easy to keep clean. I was given a choice of colour and style and they sat down with me to design it for my L shaped kitchen which was really great. “