Tenancy audits – be aware!

Tenancy audits – be aware!

The Trust will be stepping up its programme of tenancy audits as the new year begins.

Every year approximately 20% of all of the Trust’s properties are audited by our staff. These visits aim to keep our tenants safe, prevent fraud and help us keep our services efficient – to make sure you get the most out of your tenancy.

Tenancy fraud can come in many forms, but it is always damaging to the wider community. It is estimated that as many as one in every 100 housing association and council homes are unlawfully sublet. Tenancy fraud can result in increased waiting times for those in need of housing, misuse of the homes we own, damage to the house or surrounding area and an increased risk of anti-social behaviour. Sometimes vulnerable people are left homeless after unlawful evictions by the person they thought was their landlord.

The problems caused by tenancy fraud spread further than you think – so we carry out these audits to crack down on those who abuse the system. This means we can reclaim homes for families, vulnerable citizens and other people in need of an affordable home.

Tenancy audits help the Trust to seek out those who may be committing tenancy fraud. We may visit your home unannounced, out of standard working hours or at a weekend in order to avoid giving notice to anyone committing fraud.

Audits are just one way we identify tenancy fraud – we also ask our tenants to be our eyes and ears and to report any suspicions they may have to the Trust. Examples of activities which could be linked to (but are not necessarily) tenancy fraud are:

- residents refusing entry to officials and staff of utility providers (i.e. gas and water companies) for meter readings
- residents not answering the door even though they are at home
- large numbers of people frequently entering or exiting the house
- an unexpected change of occupier

If you see any of these behaviours in your neighbourhood and suspect tenancy fraud is being committed, please contact us to report it in confidence on 01923 209 000 or email: neighbourhoodservicesteam@wcht.org.uk

For more information on how we can improve our services by collecting this information, please click here.