‘Best practice’ award for Ipswich Borough Council’s housing support team

Published26th September 2022

Ipswich Borough Council’s housing service has been granted accreditation by the Housing Quality Network for excellent tenant support.

The tenancy services team were assessed in six key areas including customer focus and community support, welfare, wellbeing and value for money, in addition to payment and arrears management, finding strengths across all areas of the service.

The HQN Accreditation Panel said: “We were impressed with the strategic approach to income management at Ipswich BC and the specialist team. You’ve built excellent partnerships to support households in financial hardship, which will prove invaluable during the cost-of-living crisis. We were pleased to see such a focus on sustainment, with very low levels of evictions for rent arrears.” 

The report highlighted:

  • case management was strong with a supportive and empathetic approach from officers, balanced with persistent and diligent case management.
  • A clear ethos for sustaining tenancies through proactive advice and support.
  • Officers working diligently to prevent arrears escalating throughout the tenancy to avoid legal action and possible eviction.
  • Payment arrangements determined based on a very clear assessment of affordability.
  • Highly effective joint working between teams and partner agencies.

Councillor Neil MacDonald, Ipswich Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Housing, says:

“This is really great news and testament to the hard work and professionalism of everyone in the housing team. I am extremely proud of all involved in the service, particularly with the pressures that tenants are facing currently with the cost of living.

“The fact that as a local authority we can say that our housing support service continues to meet national best practice standards shows that we are offering a great housing service for Ipswich residents.”

In February 2018 Ipswich Borough Council were first presented with independent accreditation by the Housing Quality Network. To find out more about work of HQN visit: About us - HQN (hqnetwork.co.uk)

The HQN Accreditation Panel’s assessor felt that service strengths at Ipswich Borough Council were strong in all six areas in 2022, granting accreditation until August 2025 when re-accreditation will take place.