Local changes in Skipton
Find out more about how your views have influenced change at a local level...
You said: Residents were concerned about the impact of the rising cost of living.
We did: With shortages of labour and materials driving up the costs of repairs and maintenance, rents and some service charges were set to increase in April. We contacted each individual household to find out how this would impact them and offer them any assistance we could. Most residents had expected the rents to increase and had no major concerns, but were grateful for the explanation and the offer of support.
You said: Residents would like to make sure the estate is kept tidy, and would like more influence over how the communal grounds are landscaped.
We did: We invited customers to apply for the role of 'Green Inspector'. The Green Inspector will serve as the 'eyes and ears' for the estate, making sure that it is maintained as it should be and that the grounds maintenance service is delivered in line with the specification. The Green Inspector will take queries from residents about the grounds maintenance service and bring to Accent's attention any areas of concern. The Green Inspector will provide regular feedback on grounds maintenance by taking part in estate inspections to assess the quality of work and attend meetings with other residents, representatives from Accent and representatives from grounds maintenance contractor, Vital Element, to discuss performance. The Green Inspector will also pass on residents' suggestions as to how the communal areas can be improved.
You said: Residents were experiencing high service charges for repairs to the communal laundry facilities.
We did: We consulted with residents about proposals to replace the laundry machines through a contract rental scheme. Given the age of the current machines, repair costs were expected to escalate. Under the contract rental scheme, all repairs and servicing would be covered. New machines are expected to be cheaper to run and have shorter cycle times.
You said: Residents would like more choice in how their communal areas are decorated.
We did: The carpets in the communal hallways and lounge were due for replacement. We consulted with customers about what colour carpets they would like to be fitted.
You said: Our grounds maintenance providers were not delivering the standard of service residents wanted and expected.
We did: We invited residents on this leasehold scheme to nominate their own locally-based contractor to provide the grounds maintenance service. We consulted with residents about the specification, and asked successful nominees to provide a quote based on the enhanced specification.
You said: Due to the circumstances surrounding the coronavirus, we were unable to hold the usual AGM and pre-budget meetings face-to-face with residents on this leasehold scheme.
We did: Instead of cancelling or postponing the meeting, we held it online. In advance of the meeting, the local Homeownership Specialist recorded a presentation of the annual accounts, explaining any variations in charges. A recording of the meeting was posted online for the benefit of residents who had not been able to attend.
You said: Residents were keen to give their views as to how the appearance of the estate could be improved.
We did: We knocked on all residents' doors to hear their suggestions face-to-face. The local police were on hand to address any queries or concerns about crime and anti-social behaviour. Where we were not able to contact residents, we sent them a questionnaire inviting them to give their feedback.