Harlow Council housing repairs backlog falls as council on track to clear the backlog

Harlow Council / Sat 19th Aug 2023 at 05:41am

HARLOW Council is delivering on its priority to fix council housing by clearing the backlog in housing repairs with substantial progress being made. In the last six weeks, 3,411 housing repairs have been carried out in total and the housing repairs backlog has fallen again by over 600 jobs.

Through joint working with HTS, the council has been actively pursuing a programme to clear the backlog of works within the system and drive improvements across all repairs services. Reviewing all processes for housing repairs and directing funding towards these priorities has resulted in the reduction in the backlog of works, which has been achieved using local subcontractors and reallocation of inhouse resources to target priority areas.

The council has also seen strong progress in improving void property completions, with over 80 void properties completed and handed back for letting in the same period. This has meant more Harlow families moving into properties from the council’s Housing Needs Register and council properties being empty for less time.

Commenting on this continued success, Councillor David Carter, deputy leader and cabinet portfolio holder for housing, said:

“I am pleased to see strong progress being made to further reduce both the backlog of housing repairs and the turnaround times for void properties. It proves we are serious about fixing council housing in Harlow and that we are delivering.

“For too long housing repairs have not been dealt with quickly enough and an unacceptable backlog has built up. We are now clearing that backlog and have made enormous progress in a very short space of time. We are also bringing council homes back to availability as soon as possible when they are empty as this too has been taking too long.

“Both processes have required big changes in a short space of time to streamline and speed up working practices, which hasn’t been easy but is a testament to the hard work we are putting in, alongside our HTS colleagues, to turn things around.

“Residents can now begin to look forward to an improved repair service and more existing council homes being made available for letting.”

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18 Comments for Harlow Council housing repairs backlog falls as council on track to clear the backlog:

Kim Oconnor
2023-08-19 08:28:46

My toilet needs new system, they came they tutted, and then put a new ball cock in.....you may be doing repair s but it's being done on the cheap.... The lists goes on... guttering overflowing everywhere... my bay window leaks,, to be told by letter how to clean mould of...I don't know about any body else,, but I don't see any improvements,, and it's being down by cutting corners and on the cheap.

Dan Swords
2023-08-19 09:20:12

Hi Kim Cllr David Carter contacted you a number of times to follow this up as there are no repairs recorded but you never responded to him. You can email him [email protected] and any such issues will be resolved but he has tried to contact you several times.

Nicholas Taylor
2023-08-19 09:32:22

Yet another photo opportunity for a Conservative Councillor, at least three this week. But I am afraid that scrutiny of these figures show that this is just another example of more smoke and mirrors from the Conservatives, who of course have now been in power for 27 months and the backlog of repairs simply cannot be laid on the door of the previous administration, I of course am no fan of them either. So lets look at the facts. A check of the 2023 Spring edition of the Councils Harlow Times finds the 13th Housing Annual Report, where on page 4 information is given about housing repairs for the year 2021/22. It was reported that 29,691 repairs were carried out that year, which averages out at 571 per week so over a six week period this comes to 3425. Readers will note that this is almost exactly the same as the Conservatives are now patting themselves on the back for. So the backlog is only reducing because less are being reported or perhaps being cancelled because tenants have waited so long they have done the repair themselves. If in any doubt, a check further back shows that the numbers completed in previous years are as follow, 2016/17 = 28,298, 2017/18 = 29,706, 2018/19 = 33,429 and 2019/20 = 30,270. Nicholas Taylor, Leader of the Harlow Alliance Party

Kim Oconnor
2023-08-19 10:32:12

Dan swords,, that is a lie,, I've had no contact with Mr David Carter... So what you saying my toilet system wasn't fitted with new ball cock,THIS YEAR..and my windows and bay window wasn't looked at. David Carter has not contacted me..you couldn't make this up. .

2023-08-19 10:36:08

Quite easy to get the backlog down if you just delete jobs from the list. I have been waiting on the list for well over 18 months for a repair, which I have been phoning periodically to check on. Last time I was told the repair was no longer on the list, so I have to start all over again!

Dan Swords
2023-08-19 11:12:04

Hi Nich, in fact you are wrong again a record number of jobs came in during July and a record number of voids handed into the council too. You are wrong yet again

David Carter Cllr Harlow Council
2023-08-19 12:33:30

First of all I would like to address Kim O’Connor The last housing report which you replied to rubbishing my words I wrote back on this forum offering to visit you to discuss your issues you did not reply and you have not contacted me. The offer still stands. As for Nick Taylor and his remarks in May we had 400 new cases in June 500 and in July a record number of over 1200. We are working with HTS to reduce the outstanding repairs and clear the old cases which form part of the built up backlog. Our aim is to clear all old cases by the end of this term and then continue to keep repairs a priority to let our tenants live in decent homes. As for the Public please remember Kim O’Connor is a candidate of the Green Party And Nick Taylor the Leader of The Harlow Alliance party. Neither will say anything positive about the great work our Council Officers and the Hardworking staff of HTS are doing to improve our Town for our Residents They just pick holes and moan

alan hawkins
2023-08-19 14:01:40

repairs or alterations to adapt ,we have been told that alterations to our bathroom so that we can bathe ,are on hold for some time ,due to the money required is not there,

Nicholas Taylor
2023-08-19 16:57:14

Simple fact is that over a 6 week period the Council and it's contractors have completed the same number of jobs as occurred in a similar period in previous years. The backlog is on your watch. The number of void properties that have built up is on your watch. So few council houses are being repaired and painted externally on your watch, the council are just building up a huge backlog of work which will have to be addressed at some stage. It would be interesting to know how many jobs were outstanding at the beginning of the municipal year to compare them with at the end of it and compare it with figures for the last five years and how many jobs have been cancelled for some reason.

Kim Oconnor
2023-08-19 19:15:53

David Carter,,first of all this isn't email, or a place to contact people as you well know.. I may comment and never look at that forum again... And as being a green party candidate, most people would know that by now,, and is not the reason for rubbishing you.. I'm rubbishing the whole situation,,repair s are being done on cheap, cutting corners, I know because I've not long had one done.. . And as for my bay window and bedroom window s, they came they looked, said its not rotten and left... now why is it leaking through roof then.... I will look for your reply on this forum this time, if this is where you want to communicate..

David Carter Deputy Leader Harlow Council
2023-08-20 07:47:33

Morning Kim I do not have a way to contact you So if you send me an E Mail I will reply Then hopefully meet you to see about your Concerns

2023-08-20 09:00:12

I've been asking for many things to be addressed in my flat,Nichollsfield tower, we are currently having new doors fitted, I've asked and asked for help with my windows,that I can't see out of, no new bathroom door but a new cupboard door were nobody goes,it's all being done in the name of fire safety, yet since grenfell went up fire protection has been smashed off of our building and no body has fixed it, and as for the work that has been done, I keep asking for the dust to be kept cleanand to a minimum, the last 7 days I've had what I can only describe as a floor factory in my hall and all through my home, I have asked you many times Dan sword to address these issues, I am suffering with emphasima ,just hover up the dust would help please

gary roberts
2023-08-20 09:04:03

"Cllr David Carter contacted you a number of times to follow this up" and "but he has tried to contact you several times" These are direct quotes from Cllr. Swords. Now compare them with what Cllr. Carter says: "I do not have a way to contact you." I ask which Councillor has lost credibility in dealing with the repair issues raised by Ms. O'Connor?

Kim Oconnor
2023-08-20 19:26:05

Thank you Gary...thank you very much.you are spot on....no wonder this council is loosing credibility. The lies are just unbelievable... Mr David Carter,, I don't do email s any more , so if I was to phone Harlow council tomorrow, would they put me through to you.?????????? Dan swords please don't lie anymore.

Kim Oconnor
2023-08-21 08:33:03

I'll take that as a no then.. There you go people..

david Carter
2023-08-21 09:01:54

Morning Kim Yes if you phone Harlow council they will put you through to me. Or you can send me your number on my council E Mail address and i will contact you. I have tried to contact you via this Your Harlow comments page i am here now until 11 then from 12 until 2pm David

Kim Oconnor
2023-08-21 10:35:59

OK, I'll phone and ask council to put me through to you.

Kim Oconnor
2023-08-21 19:30:59

David Carter, I phoned Harlow council today,, I was in a long que,no surprises there, but as I held on, there said if you want council to phone back,press 1,,so I pressed 1, I had no phone call back... it's impossible.

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