William Eichler 17 October 2023

Social housing complaints hit record high

Social housing complaints hit record high  image
Image: ANDREI ASKIRKA / Shutterstock.com.

The number of complaints made against social housing landlords last year saw a record spike due to poor property conditions and media coverage following the death of Awaab Ishak.

The Housing Ombudsman Service has revealed that it escalated over 5,000 complaints against social housing landlords for formal investigation in the year to March – a 27% increase on the previous year.

The ombudsman made 6,590 orders and recommendations to make things right for residents, including ordering or recommending £1.1m in compensation, according to the Annual Complaints Review 2022-23.

The review also revealed a sharp increase in severe maladministration findings, with the number rising from 31 to 131 – a 323% increase.

The increase in complaints is due to poor property conditions, legislative changes, media attention and the inquest into the death of Awaab Ishak, according to the review.

Responding to the review, Cllr Darren Rodwell, Housing spokesperson for the Local Government Association (LGA) said: ‘Councils are working hard to deliver good outcomes for tenants – despite significant financial constraints – and are committed to improving housing conditions for all residents.

‘Ultimately, councils do not want to let their tenants down and want to work with them, the Ombudsman and the Regulator of Social Housing to deliver the best possible service.’

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