Angus council house tenant satisfaction rates have held high during the pandemic.
More than nine out of ten people living in council housing said they were happy with the way the authority’s housing service manage their neighbourhood.
And 86% felt their rent level provided value for money.
The annual tenant survey was conducted entirely by telephone last year due to the coronavirus situation.
Findings reported to communities committee councillors revealed 88% of respondents said they are very satisfied or fairly satisfied with the overall service provided by the council.
Independent researchers were commissioned to survey tenants in August and September.
The telephone-only move also brought a cost saving for the council.
But there has been a plea to ensure face-to-face contact for future surveys is not ditched to ensure vulnerable tenants without digital or phone connectivity are not ignored.
All areas of the survey showed an improvement from the previous year.
88% of respondents said they were satisfied with the quality of their home.
Council efforts to involve tenants in decision-making around areas including rent-setting saw a 94% satisfaction rate over the opportunities available to participate.
That figure showed a marked increase from the 59% rate of the previous year.
Survey response rate of 15%
Housing service manager John Morrow said: “1,003 people responded to the survey.
”That’s around 15% of our customer base so it gives us a true representation of what our tenants think about us.”
Communities convener, Montrose councillor Mark Salmond said: “We fully recognise just how important it is to hear the opinions of those people with first-hand experience of paying for and receiving our services.
“It is good to know that, with that experience, the vast majority believe we provide good value for money.
“The survey clearly demonstrates that we are going in the right direction, but we must not rest on our laurels, as there are still areas where we can do better.”
Arbroath Independent councillor Lois Speed said: “There will have been older people or those who struggle to get online and I want to highlight that to ensure we don’t leave anybody behind.”
Mr Morrow said: “Considering the difficulties our officers have been working under during the current Covid-19 restrictions, and having limited face-to-face contact with our customers and service users, this may indicate that they have both appreciated the difficulties staff are currently facing and have embraced the need to communicate in more remote ways such as by telephone and other digital means.”
“The strategic direction for the council is to make it a more digitally-enabled council, but at the same time making it accessible for everyone.
Tom O’Brien of the council’s Tenant Steering Group said: “These results are good news.
“I’m particularly impressed by the dramatic improvement in the level of satisfaction tenants have with opportunities to participate in the landlord’s decision-making processes.
“I think that underlines the success of our customer engagement strategy.”