Coronavirus: Council tenants
Following the Scottish Government announcement on enhanced Covid restrictions from midnight on Monday 4th January 2021, our Housing Repairs service will focus on emergency repairs work only. All non-urgent and routine repairs work will be paused until the current lockdown restrictions are lifted.
Emergency work includes:
• Blocked toilets where the premises contain only one toilet
• Blocked or leaking drains (not blocked sinks)
• Serious storm or accident damage
• Serious electrical faults, such as overheating of sockets or switches
• Regaining entry where a tenant is accidentally locked out (there is likely to be a charge for this).
We will also continue with gas safety checks to keep tenants and communities safe.
If you require an emergency or urgent repair call 01738 476000.
Thank you for your continued understanding and co-operation.
The work may involve you allowing our Trades Staff into your homes. We know that many of you may be concerned about letting someone into your home at this time, and so we have created some guidelines to reassure you about what we will do to keep you, your family and our staff safe.
Contacting your Locality Housing Office
All of our Locality Housing Offices remain closed in line with Scottish Government guidance, but staff are still available to provide you with assistance. If you have an enquiry please call 01738 476000 (option 2) to speak to a member of your Locality Housing Team.
Applying for housing
Please note that due to the ongoing pandemic we have had to change the way we deliver services. We are still providing a full range of housing options and homelessness services, but we are not currently able to offer face-to-face housing options interviews or advice as our offices remain closed in line with Scottish Government guidance. Also, the Housing Options Self-Assessment service is temporarily unavailable as we are building a new and improved system which will provide an option to apply for housing online.
Our information on how to apply for housing has recently been updated.
Paying your rent
We recognise that many of our tenants are facing significant financial challenges at the present time. Please be reassured that we are here to help and support you through this in any way we can. If you think you may struggle to pay your rent please get in touch with us.
We can provide assistance such as helping you to maximise your income and make referrals to agencies who can support you with the daily living costs including food provision. As your landlord we take our responsibilities to support you both financially, and in terms of your health and well-being, seriously.
Our highly trained staff will work with you to look at and agree a solution to help support you during this difficult time. We welcome the national guidance around the postponement of evictions for both social housing and private sector tenants.
Please contact your Locality Housing staff on 01738 476000 (option 2).
We offer a number of ways to pay your rent from your own home while we are in this period of lockdown, including online and via a smartphone app. You can also use PayPoint if your local shop offers this service. Visit the paying your rent webpage for more information. You can also visit the Feeling the Pinch? webpages to find out about the wide range of financial support and help available in Perth and Kinross.
If you are paying your rent online please remember to enter the 16-digit payment number at the bottom of your rent card, not the number in the middle of the card.
If you have built up any rent arrears you should call us straight away. We understand that many people have suffered financially as a result of the COVID-19 crisis and we are here to help. We can offer you a range of advice and support including referrals to make sure your income is maximised and consider other financial support like our Sustaining Tenancies Fund.
It's vital you don't ignore your arrears, they can build up quickly and can become very difficult to pay back. If you are struggling to pay your rent or we have tried to contact you because you already have arrears please get in touch. We can discuss an affordable repayment plan and can put you in contact with our agencies who are here to help.
You can speak to your Locality Housing Team on 01738 476000 (option 2) to avoid getting into further debt.
Perth & Kinross Council's homeless services continue to run. If you are homeless or think you may become homeless in the next 2 months you should contact the Housing Options and Support Team on 0800 917 0708 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Calls may take slightly longer than usual to answer at this time. Your Locality Housing Team can also provide advice.
If you are visiting a tenant in one of our sheltered housing units indoors who is part of your extended household bubble we would politely ask that you make sure you observe strict social distancing from staff and other tenants, and regularly sanitise hands.
We would also appreciate it if visitors can avoid visiting in groups, and minimise your movements around complexes during a visit. This will help keep everyone safe.
Staff continue to undertake additional welfare checks on residents over 70-years-old. This includes our tenants who live in mainstream accommodation. We are working closely with colleagues in the Health and Social Care partnership to deliver a joined-up approach.
Telephone welfare checks
Our Housing Staff have been carrying out welfare checks with vulnerable tenants to make sure they have the support and help they need during this difficult time. We are keeping in touch with tenants who we know have vulnerabilities to ensure they're safe and healthy. We'll help to put support in place for people where it's required.
If you feel that you need an urgent chat about the welfare of you or your family please call us on 01738 476000 (option 2).
Gas safety checks
Perth & Kinross Council is continuing gas servicing visits in tenants' homes at the current time, in line with national industry guidance.
Gas servicing is a statutory requirement for local authorities and is vitally important for the safety of our tenants.We would encourage tenants to allow staff access to homes to carry out these checks.
Our contractor Saltire is following robust protocols when attending homes. For the safety of tenants and their staff NHS screening questions are being asked 24 hours before a visit, and again from a 2- metre distance immediately before entering a property
Staff have also been issued with Protective Personal Equipment to wear during visits.
Perth & Kinross Council has restarted the Garden Maintenance Service for tenants. We would ask that when a staff member is in attendance cutting the grass that tenants remain inside so we can ensure safe social distancing.
Structures in gardens
If you're planning to build a fence, shed or outhouse at your property you should speak to us first to make sure you don't need planning permission. This especially applies if you are thinking of building a fence in a neighbourhood that has 'open-plan' gardens. You can check with your Locality Housing Team by calling 01738 476000 (option 2).
Planned maintenance and Capital Improvement works
Some of our planned maintenance projects have now restarted.
Work on our programme to replace windows an doors, and upgrade central heating systems, in tenants' homes has restarted. Staff working in your homes will observe the same COVID-19 guidelines as our repairs team, and we also ask that tenants observe this guidance.
Some work has also restarted on our Council house new-build programme.