HRV is Hyde’s most senior level residents’ group. They work closely with the Directors of Service, scrutinising Hyde-wide performance and finding opportunities for improvement. They also influence decision making that effects resident services and oversee resident led inspections of services.
HRV consists of up to 15 residents that monitor and scrutinise housing performance submitted by services within The Hyde Group. They are mostly residents who rent homes from Hyde, but they do have one Home Owner representative and a space for an independent member. They link directly to Hyde’s governance structure through the Chair and co-opted Vice chair (Chair of HRE) attending Group Housing Services Board.
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Summary of meeting – July 2017
HRV’s July meeting was very interesting but had some challenges, with two agenda items covering key service areas for residents – Service Charges and Income. HRV had invited the Heads of both these services to attend their meeting after receiving a lot of feedback from residents.
HRV challenged the new Head of Service Charges around residents’ historical service from this team. They emphasised that residents have been raising their issues with service charges for a number of years, and are still not confident that accounts are accurate. Many residents also do not feel that they are being kept informed. Hyde’s Head of Service Charges apologised for the level of service that residents have received, and agreed that when he joined the team there was a lot of work to do. He has worked hard to build a team that he is confident in, and they are now working with a system that will enable them to keep more accurate accounts. He assured HRV that the next set of statements will be sent out on time, and that residents can look forward to much higher levels of service delivery in the future.
HRV expressed their concern and disappointment with the letters that have been received from Hyde’s Income team by elderly and vulnerable residents. They challenged that Hyde’s processes seem to be aimed at people who are intentionally not paying their rent. They suggested that letters should be better worded and that a different approach should be taken for people on Housing Benefit that may not know that there are issues with their payments. The Head of the Income service agreed to work with HRV to look at the processes, and to review the letters to make them more suitable. She also emphasised that Hyde do a lot of work on supporting residents with managing their rent and the impacts of welfare reform.
Full minutes of the meeting will be available once they have been agreed by members.