LYHA Customer Bulletin - January 2020
The team at LYHA would like to wish all our customers and partners a happy and healthy 2020.

These Customer Bulletins are a chance for us to share our latest activity and update you about our plans. If you have any comments or suggestions, please contact: georgina.thompson@lyha.co.uk
LYHA receive Customer Service Excellence award

We are delighted to have recently been awarded the Customer Service Excellence Award. The assessor recognised our efforts to improve our customer service over the last 18 months and our company-wide commitment to increasing engagement with our customers.
As a follow-up from the assessment, our advisors are undergoing extra training so that more enquiries can be resolved at first point of contact and we are also updating our equalities information so that we can tailor our service better to individual customers' needs.
Supporting homeless people in Yorkshire

Over the Christmas period our team were busy collecting clothing, food and gift items that we donated to two local homeless charities, St George's Crypt in Leeds and the Barnsley Homeless Alliance, who do lots of fantastic work supporting homeless people in our region.

We are going to continue supporting these charities throughout 2020 as sadly the number of homeless people in our region continues to rise.
Rent review letters

We will shortly be writing to all our customers regarding your rent and service charges (where applicable) for the next financial year. In the majority of cases there will be a 2.7% increase in your charge from April 2020. This is in line with most other Housing Associations throughout the country who will be doing the same this year and reflects current government policy.

Where will we spend this additional money? We plan to spend over £1 million in 2019/20 and another £1 million in 2020/21 on improvements to our existing homes. We will also be upgrading the energy efficiency, warmth and sustainability of our properties and building new affordable housing to help address the housing crisis in Yorkshire.

What do customers need to do?
You will receive an individual letter and information leaflet through the post by the end of February. This explains more about the changes and any action you need to take.We have also created this web page for further information.
Cleaning and gardening service level agreements

We have recently worked with our Customer Scrutiny Panel to review our estates services. As part of this we ran four focus groups with customers and colleagues to find out what we are doing well and where we can improve.

One of the actions was a need to update our Service Level Agreements so that customers know exactly what to expect from the cleaning and gardening services provided by LYHA (for those properties with communal internal and/or external areas). If you've not already looked at the new service level agreements, please click on these links: Cleaning Service Standards / Gardening Service Standards
Customer Satisfaction Surveys

Over the last eighteen months, we have introduced eight different service satisfaction surveys so that you can give us regular feedback and tell us how we're doing. These include: new home satisfaction surveys and a short call after a repair or planned works to check that you were happy with the work carried out.

From this month, we will be contacting all customers who have had a gas service, as well as a sample of customers every month to find out how happy you are with our cleaning and gardening services (where applicable). Please take the time to give us your feedback. Your views are very important to us and help us to improve.
Creating much needed community space in Kirkstall

Visitors to the Kirkstall Valley Retail Park may have noticed a new outlet has sprung up. Unit 11 is a hub for a range of exciting community activities, everything from a library and community choir, to yoga, pilates and 'stay & play' sessions for young families.
It's open Monday - Friday 9.30am-4.30pm and is free for anyone to drop in - the kettle's always on! It's also available for community groups to hire. Visit  https://www.kvdt.org.uk/unit-11/  or follow Unit 11 on Facebook @Unit11KVDT

Adele Rae, one of our Board members and customers, is the Community Director of the Kirkstall Valley Development Trust which runs Unit 11: "There is an acute need for more community space in Kirkstall. Abbey Mills is currently vacant and we are working with Leeds City Council and Homes England to hopefully convert it into a long-term community space and additional social housing. In the meantime, Unit 11 is proving a fantastic way to bring people together and enjoy a variety of activities.
Team changes

There have been some recent changes to the roles of our Executive Management Team who work closely with our Board and customers to steer the future direction of LYHA.
  • Mark Pearson is our Chief Executive.
  • Adam Hutchinson is our Director of Resources/Company Secretary
  • Joanna Chambers is our Director of Assets & Growth
  • Gavin Fisk is our Director of Communities & Customer Service
For a full 'Who's Who' at LYHA, please visit the Our People section on our website.

We are also delighted to welcome new starter, Paul Lodge, who has recently joined our Estates team as Caretaker at The Elmetes and West Court.
Meet our team
Wayne Fox

Job: Property & Assets Manager

How long have you worked at LYHA?
Nearly two years.

What is your favourite part of the job?
I enjoy making improvements to the services we provide (looking for ways we can do things better, quicker and more effectively).

Where would be your ideal day out in Yorkshire?
Either watching Doncaster Rovers or a day at the races (Doncaster Races of course)!

If a visitor to Yorkshire only had time to visit one place in Yorkshire, where should they go?
To the East coast – Scarborough, Whitby, Bridlington or the North Yorkshire Moors.
Karl Howard

Job: Estates Team Leader

How long have you worked at LYHA?
34 years.

What is your favourite part of the job?
Working in the spring time when our gardens are looking their best. 

Where would be your ideal day out in Yorkshire?
Whitby.

If a visitor to Yorkshire only had time to visit one place in Yorkshire, where should they go?
Gordale scar near Malham. It's a mind blower!
And finally..............

If you would like to receive this Customer Bulletin in braille or any other language options, please contact georgina.thompson@lyha.co.uk
Leeds & Yorkshire Housing Association | 0113 2783335 | georgina.thompson@lyha.co.uk | www.lyha.co.uk