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Michelle's Update: October 2021

Clarion Housing

Dear resident,

After being at home far more than usual since the pandemic swept across the country, there may be things that now need to be repaired.

We place paramount importance on your comfort and safety in our homes, so when you need to request a repair we want to make it as easy as possible. That is why over the coming weeks we will be sending you a handy guide that will remind you how to report a repair with us.

Making sure you know what steps to take

In the guide we provide a checklist that explains which types of repairs are your responsibility and which are ours, what to do if your repair is an emergency, the ways you can request a repair, our process and what happens during the appointment.

In the guide, we have also included a section explaining our complaints process. We are committed to delivering the highest quality service to you, which is why it is essential you let us know when you think we have got something wrong. It not only means we can address the matter as soon as possible, but it helps us learn how we can improve our services for the future. We take you through the two stages of our complaints process and also offer information on how to refer your complaint to the Housing Ombudsman Service if you have been though all stages of the process and remain unhappy with the outcome.

Request a repair with your online account

The quickest, easiest and most flexible way you can request a repair is via your online account. By registering you can access our services 24/7, 365 days a week, with the added benefit of avoiding waiting in a call queue and having more control over managing your home.

You can also chat with an advisor online, make payments, set up direct debits, view statements and even receive local news, information and opportunities. So, if you haven’t already, why not create an account today? If you register now you can also opt in to our monthly prize draw to be in with a chance of winning a £100 Love2Shop voucher. Simply visit myclarionhousing.com/online-account.

Supporting you with changes to your money

If you receive Universal Credit you will be aware that during the pandemic the Government temporarily uplifted the benefit to £20 per week to ease the financial pressure on households. This increase officially came to an end earlier this month, shortly after the winding down of the furlough scheme.

We understand that this may cause a great deal of anxiety and worry for some of our residents who may be struggling to manage their finances. I want to reach out and say please don’t suffer in silence - help and invaluable advice from Clarion Futures is available to turn to whenever you need it.

If you’re having trouble dealing with this change, it is vital you take action quickly to take control of the situation and ask for support. Our specialist Money Guidance team are on hand to offer you the right advice and help thousands of residents every year to feel more confident and to get back on track. Simply complete our online financial guidance form and a member of our Guideline team will get in touch.

I’m also aware that some of you may be directly affected by the recent closure of a number of gas suppliers. Although Ofgem remain the best source of information, we are likewise here to reassure you with guidance on what to do next if your energy provider folds. It is worth remembering that if Ofgem move you to a new supplier, you won’t automatically be placed on a like for like tariff, so you may need to switch to a new deal or supplier. Take a look at our tips on helping you make the change.

How we’re assisting refugees escaping the crisis in Afghanistan

I am sure that if you have been watching the news over the last few weeks you will share my distress at the current crisis unfolding in Afghanistan. The Home Office has committed to an Afghan Citizens’ Resettlement Scheme and requested assistance from local authorities nationwide to help provide housing to those forced to flee the country. I am proud to say that we are committed to support this effort wherever possible.

As a starting point, we are identifying any suitable empty properties to allocate to our partner local authorities at their request, which will provide a warm, safe and secure home to those in desperate need of sanctuary. Of course, we deliver more than just housing, so we will also offer help and support through both our sustainment team and Clarion Futures to compliment the resettlement services the local authorities will be providing.

Keeping you in the know

Have you read the latest edition of Your Clarion - our quarterly magazine dedicated to you, our residents? As well as our usual mix of news and updates, we feature a look back at the Resident event we hosted in May, which explored the multitude of ways you can get involved in shaping our services. If you weren’t able to join us or would like to refresh your memory, we’ve compiled all the highlights in a video.<>

Another fantastic place to keep abreast of our latest news, updates and opportunities, is our lively Instagram channel. Providing a window into Clarion, we also share inspiring stories from our residents and communities that show how they’ve been supported. For example, last month we featured on our grid Hemraj, who is one of 50 young people who have joined Clarion through Kickstart, a government initiative that aims to improve the prospects for 16-24 year olds struggling to secure employment as a result of the pandemic. Follow us at @clarion.housing.

And finally…

As we enter autumn, now is a great time to start getting prepared for chillier temperatures by giving your boiler and radiators a check. By testing your heating before the first cold snap arrives and making sure everything is working as it should, you can ensure any problems are resolved quickly.

Should you need someone to come out to you, you can find your local contractor on our website, where you can also explore lots of advice and tips on taking good care of your home.