Housing society’s efforts to speed up occupation of homes earns award shortlisting

December 20 2015

MERLIN Housing Society has been shortlisted for a national award after dramatically cutting the time taken to get homes ready for new occupiers.

MERLIN Housing Society has been shortlisted for a national award after dramatically cutting the time taken to get homes ready for new occupiers.
The Chipping Sodbury-based association said at its worst last year, it took an average of 23 days to bring an empty property up to the standard for someone to move in.
It recognised it had to do better so introduced measures to improve performance, leading to a big fall to an average of just six days to get the repairs done.
As a result, the costs of completing the work have also been slashed by an average of £800.
The improvement has seen the service put in the running for an award from the National Housing Maintenance Forum.
Merlin’s repairs service manager, Zalika Fanty, said: “Over the past year we’ve put a huge effort into improving this service.
“Everyone has been involved in re-shaping the service to improve our performance, from operatives to managers. It’s been a real team effort.
“What’s really pleasing is that we’ve managed to reduce the average cost of preparing each property for its next customer, while maintaining the same level of quality and workmanship.
“By doing it faster than ever before, it means properties are empty for less time, which increases our rental income, reduces the chance that the empty property is vandalised and means new customers don’t have to wait as long before they move into their new home.”
The awards will be announced at an awards dinner at the end of  January.