The Information and Analysis Officer’s report presented the results and conclusions of a three year research partnership between East Devon District Council’s (EDDC) housing department, the University of Birmingham’s Research Centre on Household Assets and Saving Management (CHASM), and LiveWest.
The objective of the partnership was to build a richer understanding of people’s experience of their home and the relationship between their home, landlord and wellbeing. Over 3,500 social tenants, private renters (those on the Devon Home Choice housing register) and those in shared ownership responded to the survey. 58 respondents were also interviewed, some of whom were contacted over all three years of the study.
The key findings were that:
The report emphasised that what the Council did as a social landlord really made a difference to the lives of its tenants from ensuring stock was maintained to a high level, to the additional support services provided to tenants as a social landlord.
The report also supported the growing national consensus that something needed to be ‘done’ about housing for many people living in East Devon. It was well documented that there was not just a shortage of housing across all tenures but for many people they were living in unsuitable and unaffordable homes and with few options for how to improve their housing situation. The result for many people was housing insecurity and financial struggle, with resultant negative impacts on wellbeing.
The Information and Analysis Officer was thanked for her involvement in the fantastic piece of work. She advised the Board that she could provide members with ward level information if the requested it.
RECOMMNEDED: that Cabinet approve that:
4. The Council continues to invest in our homes and neighbourhoods and ensure repairs and the programme works done to our properties are of a high standard.
5. The Housing Service supports universal credit claimants by helping them to maintain their tenancies and offer budgetary and financial advice where necessary.
6. The Council continue to work with others to provide more housing opportunities and choices for people living in East Devon.
7. The study be used on a wider scale to promote the research with the Council’s partners nationally to promote the value of social housing.