Homes at the heart of making ends meet advert

Homes at the Heart of Making Ends Meet

Homes at the heart campaign logo

Gloucester City Homes (GCH) is proud to support the National Housing Federation’s new initiative “Homes at the Heart”. The campaign aims to bring social housing providers together to create a “once-in-a-generation investment in social housing” to make sure that everyone has a safe, secure and comfortable place to call home.

The theme of the campaign this week is about making ends meet. GCH has put significant investment in developing it’s financial support services with both its experienced in-house Income and Tenancy Sustainment Teams and a support partnership with the Gloucester Law Centre; helping customers who are experiencing financial problems or worries.

Between April and June 2020 our Income and Tenancy Sustainment Teams have:

  • Worked closely with tenant and residents to reduced arrears by £57,600, which is a great achievement during such difficult times and an area where many other providers have seen a sharp increase.
  • Helped tenants to access over £50,000 in Discretionary Housing Payments
  • Helped to maximise our tenant’s benefits by £560,000

Here is a typical example of where we have made a real difference to our customers lives;

Mr X’s Story

Mr X, who is 29, was raised by his Grandparents after his relationship with his mother had previously broken down. Therefore Mr X has spent the past 13 years caring for both of his Grandparents. Sadly Mr X’s Grandfather passed away in 2015, but he continued to care for his Grandmother until her passing in December 2019.

During this sad time, Mr. X did not communicate with his Housing Officer after taking on his Grandparents tenancy and therefore GCH’s Income Team reached out to him to support him. He made clear to his Income Officer that he had never been responsible for setting up his own bills or budgeting despite working full time in the community.

At this point Mr X’s Income Officer referred him to the Tenancy Sustainment Team for support. They discovered an Incentive Scheme Policy for Downsizing which Mr X was eligible for and with the help of his Housing Officer he found a smaller, more suitable property to move to.

Our Tenancy Sustainment team helped him to source carpets for the flat and advised him on bills that he needed to set up which allowed him to gain independence and take the next step in his life independently. 

Our Income and Tenancy Sustainment Teams are still working with Mr X now and will continue to do support him in maintaining a successful tenancy.