The council is consulting on its draft policy outlining ways in which it can help residents and landlords to maintain and improve the condition of housing in the district.

 

 

 

 

 

The key proposals in the policy include how the council will:

  1. Help tackle excess cold and reduce fuel poverty by expanding the eligibility criteria for the Chichester Warm Homes Initiative
  2. Continue to work with landlords to improve the standard of rented properties through the Chichester Landlord Accreditation scheme
  3. Assist homeowners that can't afford to make repairs to their homes by increasing the amount of support offered through the Home Repairs Assistance scheme, and
  4. Support those who are disabled by continuing to offer Discretionary Disabled Facilities Grants.

"We are committed to ensuring our residents have access to suitable accommodation that is well managed, properly maintained, safe and habitable," says Councillor Alan Sutton, Cabinet Member for Housing, Communications, Licensing and Events at Chichester District Council.

"As a council, we already offer a range of financial support and advice to residents on low incomes, disabled residents, and landlords to help improve the condition of housing in the district. For example, the Chichester Warm Homes Initiative was set up to help residents in fuel poverty. This occurs when households can't afford to keep warm because the cost of heating their homes is higher than average and paying for this would leave them below the poverty line. The scheme provides financial support to households in this situation to help them make energy efficient improvements to their homes. As part of our draft policy, we are proposing to expand the eligibility criteria so that we can help more people. Landlords may also be eligible for this support depending on the whether their tenant fits the eligibility criteria.

"The second part of the policy outlines the council's enforcement approach and the available powers inspecting officers have to regulate and manage non-compliance. This includes the ability to give civil penalties instead of prosecution, and provides inspecting officers with a full range of enforcement tools to take action against landlords who fail to provide acceptable homes for their tenants.

"The consultation is an opportunity to view the draft policy and offer feedback on the proposals in a quick 5-10 minute survey. This is an important piece of work and we are really keen to hear your views as it will make a huge difference to those residents who find themselves living in unsuitable conditions, and will help us to significantly improve their health and wellbeing. I would urge everyone - whether you are a homeowner, a landlord, or a tenant - to take part.

"The deadline for responding is midnight on 4 December 2020, so don't forget to have your say at  before the consultation closes.

There is also a list of frequently asked questions to help put the survey into context and a glossary to explain some of the terms used. Peoplecan request a paper copy of the questionnaire by emailing letstalk@chichester.gov.uk.

People who would like to get involved with more consultations and surveys in the future can also join Chichester District Council's Let's Talk Panel. By signing up, they will be automatically notified of any consultations by email, and can decide whether or not they want to take part. People can join by visiting Let's Talk Panel.

Date of release: 20 November 2020

Reference: 3946