Newsletter

Goodness, I’m not sure where January went, but I’d though I’d drop you a line to let you know what we’ve been up to at CHISEL.

Firstly, I should apologise for the telephone system. On investigation it seems to have been working at about a quarter of its capacity, making it very hard for you to leave messages. This should be fixed in the next couple of days, which should make it a lot easier to get through, and to leave a message if you can’t speak to anybody immediately.

In addition, we have almost completed our recruitment, and we are very pleased to welcome the following new colleagues to the team.

Jordan Josephs is our Neighbourhood Manager, dealing with rents, housing enquiries and any issues with estates. He will also be carrying out scheduled estate inspections and ‘Getting to Know You’ visits with as many of you as possible.

Dean Salter joins as Head of Property Services – Dean is a qualified Surveyor, has built his own home, and will be heading up our Stock Condition Survey, Investment Planning, Cyclical Works and Compliance. Dean will also manage our contractors ensuring that we get the best value for money.

Neil Giles joins in a couple of weeks as a part-time Neighbourhood Officer based in Brighton and focussing on our homes there.

I really want all our colleagues to be out and about as much as possible, and since we reintroduced Estate Inspections this month, Jordan has said how much he has enjoyed meeting you, as he visits the estates. If you’d like to join him on an inspection, please email [email protected]

Repairs and works to your homes.

We’ve largely caught up with the backlog inherited when we took the repairs service in-house, but I think that I should thank you for your patience as we’ve worked through these repair works. Repairs Officer Chanice has asked me to ask you to email the repairs inbox with new cases, as she is often on home visits, and can’t always respond to emails straight away. That address is [email protected]

If you are experiencing any issues with damp and mould, that is absolutely CHISEL’s responsibility to investigate. Please let us know if you are experiencing this by calling in or emailing [email protected]

Your help..

When I’ve talked to you on my visits, I have often heard that you don’t feel that you see us enough. In addition to the Estate Inspections and Getting to Know You Visits; we may be calling on you a few times to carry out the following works or investigations over the next few months:

  • Stock Condition Survey – to help us plan our investment programme.
  • Valuation – only so that we have a better knowledge of the organisation’s assets, not for any sort of sale .
  • Electrical Installation testing – important compliance work
  • Gas check (or CP12) if yours is due.

In addition, we will be carrying out a Tenants Satisfaction Survey on the telephone – this is so that we can understand where we really must focus our improvement.

I’d like to thank you in advance for helping achieve all of the above. I’m sorry that the survey and valuation are happening at the same time, but they are well overdue for us, and essential to have accurate data for your homes, so we can get about planning the investment programme.

Website

I’m really pleased that the CHISEL Board have been very enthusiastic with my plans for the website. It will be expanded dramatically and have two main functions – the first will be for all your day-to-day CHISEL needs – contact details, staff profiles, board members and up to date policies and procedures.

This second main function will be as a repository for all the archive from our amazing self-built homes. We want to celebrate those of you who built your homes with photographs from the time, plans and other ephemera – which will be an amazing resource not only for the original self-building residents, but for new residents in those homes, and for our contractors as well. I’m expecting a lot of interest from the architectural community and other people who care about our wonderful heritage.

Resident Involvement

There are massive plans here so that you can get involved in a lot of different ways in CHISEL and help guide our priorities for the future. I’m going to write to you separately about this, but I can assure you, it won’t all be long committee meetings in a drafty church hall..

I’ll also let you know about our plans to help support vulnerable LGBT+ people at risk of homelessness in Brighton.

As you can see, we’ve been very busy – and as usual a big thank you to all of you we’ve met this month for your time and for all your feedback!

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