Manor Croft, Nottingham

Background

Manor Croft is a development of 54 one bed single occupancy flats and a 1 two bed flat based in Nottingham which is manged by Places for People.


The Challenges

The neighbourhood suffered with a poor reputation with serious problems of anti-social behaviour, becominga ‘no-go’ zone for Police and staff. Over time the scheme became difficult to let with high turnover / low demand and needing intense housing management. A number of flats were left vacant and ‘tinned’ up. The flats are small compared to similar one-bed accommodation in the area.


The Solution

Over the past three years, intensive activity has taken place to transform this neighbourhood to achieve the vision set out in the Neighbourhood Plan.

Highlights include:

• Intensive work to change the customer base through taking action against customers who were in breach of tenancy and contributing to the negative issues on the estate. Recognising our new zero tolerance approach, many other customers handed in their notice or abandoned their property.

• Making a management decision to not re-let properties as they became void, as the customer base needed changing.

• Making a successful business case for investment for a pilot project remodelling five flats. Remodelling consisted of increasing the living area by reducing the size of the bedroom, comprehensively modernising the kitchen and bathroom, and fully decorating each property.

• Implementing an innovative, intensive and professional approach to marketing properties to a new customer group of working people.

• Undertaking a comprehensive programme of kerb appeal improvements, including improvements to lighting, landscaping, external painting, parking, waste and recycling facilities, and upgrading the site office and laundry facilities.

• Based on the successful pilot phase, a business case for fully remodelling the neighbourhood was approved, and now all properties have been transformed, including those of the few long standing customers. We also secured funding to double the size of the car park, making it more attractive to working customers who were more likely to have cars.

• Building strong relationships with customers through regular site presence, regular e-newsletters and consulting regularly and acting rapidly on feedback to provide a continual improvement in the customer experience


The Result

• Surplus per Property has increased from £455 in 2013/14 to £1,463 in 2014/15, and £3,500 in 2015/16, representing an additional £175,665 surplus in 15/16 for the Neighbourhood compared to 2013/14 figures.

• Turnover has reduced from 87% in June 2015 to 36% in June 2016.

• Total Void Loss has reduced from 5.2% in June 2015 to 1.13% in June 2016.

• Re-let times has reduced from 173 days in June 2015 to 23 days in June 2016.

• Arrears reduced from a high of 7.6% in 2014/15 to a low of 4.3% at the end of 2015/16.