Council tenants and leaseholders

We know that residents are worried about the impact of COVID-19, but your housing teams are ready to work differently. This is to support everyone who lives in our council homes as much as we can. We know we will have to move our teams around as our staff are forced to self-isolate. You will see some changes to your services but please bear with us. We are working hard to make sure that all essential work continues. We will make sure that the most vulnerable people in our communities get the help they need.

Your neighbourhood housing teams 

Your neighbourhood housing teams will continue to work, but to protect residents and staff, the team will only be carrying out essential visits. They will be prioritising supporting vulnerable residents and people living alone with other support needs. Please look out for your neighbours, particularly if they are older, and if you are worried about them please call us on 020 7974 4444 (option 9). If you live alone and need help to go shopping and can’t ask family, friends or neighbours for help, contact us on the same number.

If you are worried about paying your rent we can help

We know that many of our residents who are working will be very worried about the impact of the situation on their income. If your financial situation has changed and you are concerned about how you will pay your rent or council tax, we are here to help. No tenant will be evicted from our council homes if there is clear evidence that they have been unable to pay rent as a direct result of COVID-19. Please get in touch with your neighbourhood housing officer as soon as possible so we can offer you support and advice. The council is committed to supporting tenants through this very difficult time.

If you’re concerned about not being able to pay your rent because you pay in cash or use an Allpay card, speak to your neighbourhood housing officer. You can also pay for your rent online or over the phone on 020 7974 4444.

If you are worried about paying your service charge

If you are experiencing difficulties paying your service charge or major works invoices because of COVID-19, please email us at leaseholderservices@camden.gov.uk or call 020 7974 3559 and we will be able to offer you support. 

Due to staff working remotely and not in the office, we ask leaseholders not to send letters and cheques in the post – please contact us by email and pay any charges online. 

Email updates

We are sending you important updates about your housing services by email. Please regularly check your inbox, including spam and junk folders. If you haven’t registered an email address with the Council or your email address has changed, contact your neighbourhood housing officer or leaseholder services. 


We will continue to send letters to tenants and leaseholders who do not have access to email.

Temporary changes to the repairs service

The Council is being careful and planning ahead to make sure our services are resilient over the next four months. This means making decisions now about the types of repairs we can deliver.

As the government has imposed a stay at home policy in order to avoid the spread of Covid-19 (Coronavirus) from Tuesday 24 March 2020 we will only be carrying out emergency repairs inside tenants' homes until further notice. All communal repairs will be carried out as normal although this will be under ongoing review.

Emergency repairs include:

  • A smell / potential presence of gas or carbon monoxide
  • No gas
  • Serious water leak – a severe leak or burst pipe
  • Blocked (only) toilet in the property, dirty water coming up through plug holes or toilets
  • Electricity – total loss of power supply, water leaking through electrical fittings, sparking or buzzing light fittings or sockets.
  • Heating and hot water – total loss of heating and hot water during winter periods
  • Drains – communal drains (internal or external), overflowing with sewage
  • Soil Stack – external soil stack blocked.
  • Security – insecure front/back door or ground floor window, broken window/door glass panel (make safe only, no re-glazing)
  • Ceiling – making safe dangerous ceilings.
  • Communal services – making safe boundary walls (regardless of height of wall)
  • Roofing – falling masonry, render, roof tiles or slates.
  • Repairs which risk the health and safety or security of yourself or anyone else in your home or around your estate
  • No cold water
  • Missing man hole covers
  • OT - ceiling hoists (someone stuck); Stair lifts (someone stuck)
  • Blocked chute
  • Lift repair

Essential and non-urgent repairs like decorating, plastering, mould washing, bath panel replacement, adjusting doors or non-emergency surveys will be temporarily put on hold. Our normal service will continue once the coronavirus risk has reduced and we will keep you updated when this happens. 

Our repairs customer service staff will ask everyone requesting a repair if anyone in their household is self-isolating. Repairs staff or our contractors will only attend a home where a tenant is self-isolating in an emergency, on a case by case basis, following advice from our public health team. The information you give us will stay on record for 60 days from the date you told us.

Due to the possible vulnerability and age of tenants in sheltered housing, we will be limiting the number of tradespeople coming into the sheltered schemes and only carrying out emergency repairs.

If you have any queries about repairs please call repairs customer service on 020 7974 4444 option 3 then 1.

Your caretaking service

Although you might not see your usual caretaker on your estate as we move staff around to cover as necessary, we reassure you that essential services – cleaning, health and safety, reporting emergency repairs in communal areas and supporting our most vulnerable residents – will continue to be our priority across the borough. 

Our focus is on protecting our most vulnerable residents, and we will be providing extra cleaning in our sheltered schemes where people need it most. Your caretakers will keep estates safe and clean, but we are asking every resident and visitor to follow the Public Health England advice that everyone should wash their hands thoroughly when they get home to protect themselves and their families. Public Health England advise that you:

  • wash your hands more often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use a hand sanitiser when you get home, when you blow your nose, sneeze or cough, eat or handle food
  • avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • avoid close contact with people who have symptoms
  • cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in a bin and wash your hands
  • clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in your home

 
Please help your caretakers to keep everyone safe and well by disposing of your rubbish properly, in tied up bags and in the right place.

Temporary changes to your electrical meter reading service 

We are temporarily suspending the electrical meter reading service due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. This is to keep staff and residents safe. 

Meter readings and smart meter installations will be put on hold until further notice but we will still be able to make emergency top ups – email meterreading@camden.gov.uk or call 0207 974 4444 (option 3 and then option 5) if you need one.

Private tenants and landlords

During these challenging times we are urging landlords and agents not to evict tenants who can’t pay the rent as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19). For information on financial help and changes to our procedures, please visit our webpage

If you’re a private tenant and you’re struggling to pay your rent or have any other questions or concerns around your home in relation to coronavirus (COVID-19) please visit our webpage 

Homelessness and hostel acccommodation

Camden Council has been developing emergency services to ensure that homeless people and people rough sleeping receive the highest possible protection and support amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Camden already has one of the largest hostel pathways in the country, providing over 640 beds to some of the most vulnerable in our society. We are working with our local partners and with neighbouring councils and the Mayor to ensure that anyone rough sleeping or experiencing homelessness can access care, support and shelter during this time. 
Camden is currently: 

  • Stepping in to ensure homeless people displaying coronavirus symptoms have access to a bed to self-isolate regardless of whether they qualify for Government support;
  • Sourcing extra beds needed for self-isolation – this could mean going beyond beds in our hostels to commandeer spaces in hotels, student accommodation and hospitals; and
  • Working with voluntary organisations to get meals to homeless people self-isolating in these beds.

If you’re worried about a rough sleeper you can use the Camden Safer Streets app or phone 020 7846 3535 to let us know and we will send officers to help. To download the app or find out more about our work with rough sleepers please visit: camdenrts.co.uk
 

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