Neighbourhood Management Policy – November 2022

Lead officer: Lisa Smith Neighbourhood Service Operations Manager

Version 9.0

Purpose/Changes Health check

Approval Date November 2022

Approved By HoST

Suggested Review Date October 2025

Version 8.0 – Purpose/Changes Health check – Approval Date November 2022 – Approved By HoST – Suggested Review Date October 2025

Version 7.0 – Purpose/Changes Amendment after full review – Approval Date October 2018 – Approved By Head of Service – Suggested Review Date September 2019

1.1 Ongo Homes (OH) believes that everyone should be able to enjoy living in a clean, safe, secure and tidy place where people want to live and be proud of.

1.2 OH recognises that effective neighbourhood management is a vital part of our landlord role, the satisfactory delivery of which will assist greatly in promoting safe, secure, sustainable and desirable communities.

1.3 We recognise that effective neighbourhood management goes beyond looking after buildings and the physical environment. It is also about providing or arranging necessary information and advice to support tenants and residents. It involves liaising and working with tenants, residents and other agencies to ensure that the environment is safe for others who may visit, use or enter our land or property.

1.4 We will work with our partners to reduce waste, maintain and improve our neighbourhoods and communities as part of our commitments to environmental sustainability.

2.1 This policy applies to the organisation and its employees, committees, partners, volunteers, tenants and leaseholders, and to any external organisation supported or engaged by OH.

2.2 In general the Neighbourhood Management Policy will deal with those aspects of the function that are not covered by other documentation and will define neighbourhood management as a combination of;

  • Issues relating to the Tenancy Agreement and, in particular, breaches of the Tenancy Agreement;
  • Management of the properties, the surrounding area and common areas;
  • Environmental Issues

2.3 The following specific areas of activity, for both employees and customers, are covered:

  •  Providing advice and guidance on the responsibilities of OH and those of customers
  • Management of environmental contracts
  • Maintaining communal areas
  • Estate Walkabouts, Inspections and managing performance
  • Services provided by the Neighbourhood Services Team
  • Environmental Improvements
  • Implementation and monitoring

3.1 The specific objectives of the Neighbourhood Management Policy are to:

  • Develop a pro-active approach to the management of our properties and neighbourhoods;
  • Manage the environment around our properties and common areas effectively;
  • Ensure that all residents are aware of their respective responsibilities;
  • Set appropriate standards to measure performance delivery and residents’ satisfaction.
  • Have clean and tidy properties and neighbourhoods

4.1.1 Garden Maintenance

4.1.2 Residents that have exclusive use of a garden shall be responsible for ensuring that all parts of the garden are maintained to an acceptable standard and are not allowed to become overgrown or untidy. They must ensure that the garden does not endanger the health and safety of others or cause damage to any property. (Please refer to our Tenancy Management Policy).

4.2 Maintenance of open plan areas

4.2.1 We will be responsible for maintaining external common areas and open spaces. This includes grassed areas, play areas, boundary fencing, shrub beds, parking bays, roads and footpaths that are owned by Ongo Homes. Some of the costs incurred in meeting these obligations may be incorporated into a service charge for tenants and included as part of the property management account for leaseholders, shared owners and owners.

4.2.2 We will ensure that we have a grounds maintenance contract in place to maintain all identified open spaces and work in partnership with our approved contractor to ensure;

  • Amenity/Open spaces of grass are regularly cut throughout the growing season – Weather permitting.
  • Shrub beds and Hedges are not allowed to overhang footpaths – Maintained twice a year, summer prune (siding) and winter prune (hard).

Footpaths, parking bays and roads that are owned by Ongo Homes are regularly sprayed with weedkiller.

  • SLA with NLC to inspect and repair our playparks.
  • Leaf collection is done twice a year during November and January.

4.2.3 We will periodically meet with our contractor/s to ensure the services provided are of the highest standard and to discuss customer satisfaction.

4.2.4 We will liaise and work with any local authority or body to identify any areas that are the responsibility of the Council to ensure they are regularly maintained to an acceptable standard.

4.3 Cultivation of amenity land

If customers want to cultivate or maintain any communal areas they must get our permission in advance.

  • Consideration needs to be given re utilities and any pipe work. Damage caused to any utilities will be payable by the customer.
  • Permission will only be considered if the majority of customers affected in the block are in agreement with the proposals.
  • The grounds maintenance service charge will continue to apply. To be noted this charge could also increase, depending on the changes proposed.
  • The land must be put back to how it was if they decide they are no longer willing or able to maintain it at their cost, any cost to Ongo will be recharged.
  • The land remains Ongo responsibility and our contractors must be allowed access at all times to maintain the area.
  • No permanent structures (except sheds or greenhouses) or hard landscaping/ ponds will be allowed. Please note Local Authority Planning Permission will need to be sought for any structure on amenity space

4.4 Sheds/greenhouses on amenity land
Customers must get permission in advance.

  • Sheds must be clearly numbered & maintained by the customer.
  • The land must be put back to how it was if they decide they are no longer willing or able to maintain it at their cost, any cost to Ongo will be recharged.
  • The land remains Ongo responsibility and our contractors must be allowed access at all times to maintain the area.

Please refer to the Property Alterations Procedure on the intranet.

4.4.1 Neighbourhood Services

4.4.1 OH will provide a caretaking and cleaning service to neighbourhoods and communal areas where required. All communal areas will be inspected at least once every three weeks to ensure the area is kept clean and tidy. .. Where we carry out any caretaking tasks of common areas the costs incurred will be recharged back to tenants as a service charge and to leaseholders as part of the property management account. Appendix 1 details the tasks our Neighbourhood Services team will undertake however this list is not exhaustive and tasks will vary in order to achieve the aims of this policy.

4.4.2 We will undertake cleaning tasks to all communal areas of our high rise blocks, retirement living schemes, flats and maisonettes. The frequency and level of the cleaning will vary and depend on the requirements of the location. Where we carry out the cleaning of common areas the costs incurred will be recharged back to tenants as a service charge and to leaseholders as part of the property management account.

4.5 Winter Weather Services

4.5.1 Ongo Homes will undertake winter weather services to ease the access to homes and around selected neighbourhoods. Services will include the clearance of main walkways around retirement living schemes, Market Hill and Trent View House high rise flats. We will remove snow and use preventative measures to minimise icy conditions. The locations where winter weather services will be provided will be decided in conjunction with tenants (see appendix 2). The ability to provide services will depend on the weather conditions and resources available. Ongo Homes will plan in advance, where possible, for the provision of such services outside of our normal working hours.

4.6 Garage site and parking areas

4.6.1 All Ongo garage sites and parking areas, not including driveways to individual properties, will be maintained on a regular basis by our Neighbourhood Services Team.

4.6.2 All tenants, leaseholders and garage licensees must adhere to the obligations set down in their respective agreements relating to driveways, garages, garage sites, forecourts and parking areas. Where a tenant, leaseholder or licensee fails to meet any of these obligations appropriate action will be taken to encourage them to adhere to the conditions of their agreement. Continual failure to meet their responsibilities will be viewed as a breach of the agreement and all avenues will be explored to resolve the breach including the use of legal remedies.

4.6.3 Where parking areas are provided, we will work with residents to ensure that the parking areas are considerately used. If a need is identified, we will consider working with residents to implement a parking permit scheme so that only residents can use the parking area. OH will be responsible for the administration of any scheme and work with an external partner to provide the enforcement element. Once a parking permit scheme is in operation, we will ensure that it is effective and operates smoothly.

4.7 Environmental crime

4.7.1 Environmental crime affects our ability to maintain and improve our neighbourhoods. We aim to minimise the incidents of environmental crime and respond promptly when incidents are identified. Environmental crime covers a variety of acts such as:-

  • Vandalism
  • Dog fouling
  • Graffiti
  • Dropping litter
  • Fly tipping

4.7.2 We will investigate all instances of environmental crime and work with partner agencies to identify the offender and take the appropriate enforcement action, please refer to the Anti Social Behaviour Policy and Pet Policy. We will encourage residents who witness environmental crime to report it to us and any other relevant organisation such as the Police or Environmental Health.

4.7.3 We will undertake any task to rectify the result of environmental crime which is not the responsibility of a tenant. Please refer to appendix one and the Maintenance Policy for the relevant timescales for remedial work.

4.7.4 Tenants are responsible for making good or paying for damage caused by deliberate acts of vandalism or any results caused by environmental crime by themselves, any member of their household or visitors. Please refer to the Recharge Policy.

4.7.5 Where we witness the result of environmental crime on land or property not owned by OH we will report the matter to the land owner and the Local Authority where appropriate.

4.8 Abandoned vehicles

4.8.1 OH forbids the parking of SORN (Statutory Off Road Notification )vehicles on their communal land.

4.9 Waste management

4.9.1 OH are responsible for addressing litter and fly-tipping within the boundaries of the properties and land that we own. Please refer to section 4.4 on the duties of our Neighbourhood Services Team.

4.9.2 Tenants will be advised on how to check dates for bin collections, using the North Lincolnshire Council’s website at the start of their tenancy.

4.9.3 All Tenants and leaseholders are expected to take all reasonable care to ensure that their household rubbish is properly stored and disposed of. Refuse must be adequately bagged and stored until collection in bin stores or other designated areas. Tenants and leaseholders are also responsible for making arrangements for the disposal of large items such as household furniture. Residents must comply with the local arrangements for the collection of refuse.

4.9.4 We will work in partnership with the Local Authority to encourage our residents to recycle and re-use their household waste. We will, where possible, provide locations for the positioning of recycling facilities. Furthermore we will work with the Local Authority regarding the provision of litter and dog bins and the disposal of such waste. Where a tenant is unable to manage their household waste, we will work with the Local Authority to provide the necessary guidance.

4.9.5 Bins should be stored in the designated areas and rubbish should be disposed of correctly as per Local Authority guidelines. We will maintain communal bin stores and their surrounding areas. We will consider taking action regarding any misuse of these areas, including raising re-charges and enforcing the terms of the tenancy agreement.

4.9.6 We will ensure that we have the appropriate Waste Licenses to allow our staff, and partners, to remove waste from properties we manage, or lease. This will ensure that we correctly manage the disposal of waste in accordance with current regulations, and are not liable to legal action as a result of any negative steps we may take.

4.10 Regeneration and Investment in our neighbourhoods

4.10.1 It is vital that large scale improvement work to our properties and neighbourhoods is completed to assist with the day to day management of our neighbourhoods. We will plan in advance a variety of improvement work which will complement the aims of all of our service areas. Where an area is identified as requiring large scale investment to improve its overall appearance or to design out a neighbourhood management problem, we will consult with local residents and prioritise improvement work based on financial resources and necessity.

4.11 Partnership working

4.11.1 OH will work with all relevant Partners, Contractors and local organisations to ensure our properties and neighbourhoods are managed and maintained to the highest possible standards.

4.12 Communal areas

4.12.1 Tenants and leaseholders who pass through an internal communal area to access their home or have use of an external communal area shall be responsible for ensuring that they, their visitors and household members abide by their tenancy and leasehold conditions. Tenants and leaseholders must ensure that no items are left in the communal area and that no rubbish or litter is deposited. Tenants and leaseholders must also not interfere or cause damage to any door entry system, security or safety equipment. Everyone living in a building with a controlled door entry system is expected to use the system correctly by keeping the entrance door shut at all times and only allowing access to identified visitors to their home. Furthermore tenants and leaseholders must ensure that no damage or vandalism occurs to any feature of a communal area. We will consider taking action against tenants and leaseholders, regarding any damage or vandalism in these areas, including raising re-charges and enforcing the terms of the tenancy agreement or lease.

4.12.2 Due to potential dangers of obstructing access or means of escape in the event of a fire any high risk item left in a communal area (e.g. mobility scooter; motorcycle, moped or any machinery having a petrol or diesel engine.) will have a warning card placed upon it advising that items are high risk and will be removed within 24 hours. Other items that pose a potential hazard will be dealt with by a managed approach and labelled with a clear notification card giving a date of no longer than 5 working days. All reasonable steps will be taken to attempt contact with the owner of the item (s) to give them opportunity to remove them first. All items removed by OH after the expiry of the notification will be – disposed of and the owner, if identified will be recharged the full costs associated with the disposal. A managed approach will be taken to low risk items stored/kept in the entrances and communal rooms of retirement living schemes.

4.12.3 No items can be stored in any meter cupboards opening into an internal communal area. These areas will be inspected regularly.

4.12.4 Failure of the tenant or leaseholder to meet their responsibilities will be viewed as a breach of their agreement with OH. All avenues for resolving matters will be utilised including tenancy support and legal remedies.

4.12.5 We will investigate all instances of damage and vandalism, and will work with partner agencies to identify the offender and take the appropriate enforcement action, please refer to the Anti Social Behaviour Policy.

4.12.6 We will visit each internal communal area every two weeks to inspect communal areas for items and damage.

4.12.7 If an infestation occurs at a location that is identified as a common or communal area and not part of tenants homes, such as shared corridors, lifts, garden areas and shared drainage route, OH will take steps to eradicate the infestation and prevent it from re-occurring etc. The Pest Control contractor will assess and treat within 10 working days of the notification and 24 hours if it is a statutory nuisance.

4.14 Walkabouts / Inspections

4.14.1To ensure OH provides a good neighbourhood management service, we will complete inspections in a variety of ways. We operate a mystery shopping style approach to formal inspections to ensure we get a realistic and accurate inspection of our neighbourhoods. We will have also have a planned estate inspection programme. Furthermore, any resident will be able to request a walkabout of their neighbourhood with their Tenancy Officer and Neighbourhood Services operative. Finally, we will inspect hotspot areas for overgrown and untidy gardens between May to September to ensure that we fulfil the aims of this policy.

4.14.2 The outcomes concluded from all the different inspections formats will drive the focus of our neighbourhood management services.

5.1 The Board and the Director of Operations are responsible for ensuring that this policy is implemented.

5.2 The Head of Property & the Head of Landlord Services have responsibility for monitoring the service and ensuring that it complies with the requirements of this policy.

5.3 All employees who are involved in the delivery of neighbourhood management services are responsible for ensuring they comply with the requirements of this policy.

5.4 We will monitor customer satisfaction of service delivery through periodic surveys and by analysing trends in complaints, comments and compliments.

5.5 We will set and monitor targets relating to:-

  • %of customers satisfied with our neighbourhood based services
  • % of tree inspections and necessary work completed on time
  • % of Neighbourhood Services tasks completed on time.
  • % of successfully resolved tenancy breaches relating to environmental crime or untidy gardens
  • Undertake quarterly mystery shopping exercises for inspecting our neighbourhoods
  • % of inspection requests arranged and completed in target
  • Regeneration and investment programmes that improvement the appearance of our properties and neighbourhoods.
  • Our Grounds maintenance Contractor We will involve customers in the delivery of neighbourhood management services via the Grounds Maintenance Panel, Tenant Inspectors and other relevant resident involvement structures.

6.1 This policy also links to our:

  • Abandoned Vehicle procedure
  • Alterations procedure
  • Anti-social Behaviour Policy
  • Complaints, Comments and Compliments Policy
  • Empty Homes and Lettings Policy
  • Fire Management of High/Low Rise/Myos House/Retirement Schemes
  • Infestation Procedure
  • Tree Policy & Guidance
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Lettings Policy
  • Local Offer – Your Community
  • Mobility scooter policy and procedure
  • Recharge Policy
  • Repairs and Maintenance Policy
  • Tenancy Agreement
  • Tenancy Management Policy and Procedures
  • OH Leasehold Management Policy
  • Use of communal areas procedure

6.2 The main pieces of legislation and regulation relevant to this policy include:

  • Cleaner and Safer Neighbourhoods Act 2005
  • Environmental Protection Act 1990
  • Environmental Protection (Duty of Care) Regulations 1991
  • Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
  • Town and Country Planning Act 1990
  • The Planning and Compensation Act 1991
  • The Regulatory Reform Order (Fire) (2005)
  • Equality Act 2010
  • Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999

7.1 In three years time unless any regulatory or legislative changes occur which have an impact on this policy. 7.2 We will ensure that we consult with residents in the development, monitoring and review of this policy.

Neighbourhood Management:

In its widest sense, neighbourhood management refers to property management and services to residents and other stakeholders, which aim to enable residents to have quiet enjoyment of their homes and a decent, safe and secure environment. Neighbourhood management is not just about looking after buildings and the physical environment; it also involves providing or arranging necessary advice and support to customers and involves working with other agencies to achieve decent living conditions.

Neighbourhood :

Local area where residents relate to each other as part of a wider community

Housing Management Function:

Any service delivered by OH relating to the management of tenancies or advice to tenants

Neighbourhood Watch:

A groups of volunteer residents who look out for signs of crime in their own neighbourhoods, and share that information with each other, local police and other agencies such as OH.


A person who leases property or land from OH under a formal Lease agreement.


A Service Level Agreement is a contract between a service provider and its internal or external customers that documents what services the provider will furnish and defines the performance standards the provider is obligated to meet.

Cleaning of stairwells / communal area / lifts 5 working days

Dealing with dog fouling 5 working days

Clearing bin areas / chutes 24 hours

Attending neighbourhood inspections As and when requested by a customer Litter picking 5 working days

Fly tipping 2 working days

Weed killing and moss removal 10 working days

Maintaining car parks & garage areas Areas checked every 3 weeks

Removing offensive graffiti 24 hours

Removing non- offensive graffiti 5 working days

Erecting signs 10 working days

Removing Hazardous items e.g. needles and drug paraphernalia 24 hours

Monitoring grounds maintenance services and reporting problems Areas checked every 3 weeks and concerns reported within 24 hours

Reporting tenancy/housing management issues and collecting evidence Completed when required

Reporting Abandoned vehicles Completed when required

Reporting repairs –neighbourhood and property based Completed when required

Fire / health and safety checks High rise properties checked daily (Monday – Friday) , low rise blocks checked fortnightly

Assisting with the replacement of door entry fobs – where there is only 1 24 hours

Replacement fobs where there is another one available  10 working days

Infestation Inspection 10 working days

Winter weather duties such as snow clearance and salt distribution Completed when required

All areas considered to be part of the complexes listed below will received winter weather services supplied by the Neighbourhood Services team.

  • Albion Grove, Epworth
  • Ancholme Gardens, Brigg
  • Blackmoor Road, Haxey
  • Broadlands House, Bottesford
  • Chatterton Crescent, Scunthorpe
  • Chesleigh House, Gainsborough
  • Crosby House, Scunthorpe
  • Day Close, Keadby
  • Greenfields, Goxhill
  • Horsefair Paddock, Brigg
  • Lincoln Court, Scunthorpe
  • Martins Close, Barrow
  • Myos House, Scunthorpe
  • Princess House, Scunthorpe
  • Pryme Road, Scunthorpe
  • School Close, Epworth
  • Sutton House, Scunthorpe
  • Trent View House, Scunthorpe
  • Victoria House, Barton
  • Wells Court, Broughton
  • Wold Court, Wrawby