Services at TPAS Scotland

Landlords may seek tenant opinion on rent levels or feedback on the standard of home improvements. Tenants may be interested in starting a group or setting up a project to review the services on offer from their landlord. Whatever your tenant participation needs, TPAS can tailor a solution to suit you.

TPAS Scotland have been supporting tenants groups, landlords, and related organisations for over 30 years. Our services help to ensure that tenants have the skills and knowledge to effectively become involved in a range of housing issues, and landlords are supported to make this happen.

TPAS Conference 2016
Participation Audits

Tenant Participation Audits

TPAS has developed a framework for auditing landlords’ tenant participation strategies. The audit focuses on the role of those involved in the tenant participation process. It looks at how well the landlord meets legislative requirements and how effectively it engages with tenants and residents.

The Audit Approach is Based on the Following Key Stages

Mapping: This looks at key features of the tenant participation strategy and decision making processes. It examines the policy and procedures within the organisation and identifies resources and constraints for tenant participation.

Tracking: This stage establishes whether the organisation is meeting the aims and objectives of the participation strategy. TPAS assess attitudes and perceptions of tenants and staff in relation to tenant participation. This stage establishes whether there are similarities between the aspirations of tenants and those of the organisation. It also establishes the extent to which tenants have been involved in the development of the strategy.

Reality checking: This stage establishes how things actually work on the ground in terms of service provision. It establishes whether the strategy is being implemented as intended and identifies strengths and opportunities to improve. TPAS then provides findings and recommendations for the revised strategy.

Independent Advice

TPAS Scotland Independent Advice

TPAS has worked as independent tenant advisor in a number of proposals for large scale voluntary transfers and also for a number of smaller transfer of engagements. We pride ourselves on explaining complex issues in clear easy to understand terms and ensuring tenants are involved at key stages.

Our approach supports tenants to take part in decisions about the future of their homes. As ITA we empower tenants by supporting them to ask the right questions at the right time in the transfer process. This in turn helps take away the “fear” factor and improve tenant involvement.

Our approach as ITA is shaped by individual circumstances, although as a minimum we will:

  • Ensure that tenants and residents understand why the Council may be considering stock transfer and all the possible options and processes
  • Ensure that tenants can influence decisions
  • Ensure that all tenants have opportunities to ask questions using a variety of methods
  • Ensure that tenants can express their priorities
  • Provide clear easy to understand information in plain language
  • Enable tenants to make informed choices
  • Enable tenants to make up their own minds about the proposals
  • Encourage tenants and residents to get involved
  • Ensure that tenants fully understand all the issues relating to any proposals
  • Provide impartial objective advice, support and training
  • Ensure that tenants and potential tenants get the best possible deal from any new landlord
  • Ensure residents are fully informed
Policy & Strategy

Policy and Strategy Development

Tenant participation strategies should be reviewed every three years. TPAS can help your organisation to review your existing strategy by drawing on our expertise and knowledge of best practice in tenant participation.

Landlords across the country are continually developing innovative approaches to involving their tenants, which we disseminate as good practice. TPAS has helped a wide range of social landlords from different parts of the country develop appropriate involvement structures based on their own particular circumstances.

We have experience in recommending suitable participation structures for your organisation. Whether you have pockets of housing stock separated by large distances, do not have any tenant associations or are just not sure of the best way to involve your tenants, TPAS can help develop a robust participation strategy that suits your needs.

Development of Core Housing Management

TPAS believe tenants should be able to shape the development of localised housing management policies. TPAS can help your housing organisation to develop effective policies that reflect the law, good practice and local needs and priorities by involving tenants in the process.

TPAS work with a range of specialist housing consultants to make sure housing organisations and their tenants can develop the best possible services. We can either lead the whole process, or we can carryout specific tasks such as tenant consultation, that will help you develop services that tenants want.

One of our strengths at TPAS is our independent status. As an independent organisation it is easier for our staff and consultants to identify both strengths and weaknessess, as well as opportunities for improvement. Tenants are also more likely to openly discuss their housing service with an independent organisation. This makes TPAS the ideal organisation to carry out tenant consultation, as well as policy review and development.

Event Planning

Help Planning your Events

TPAS has extensive experience of planning successful tenant events. We regularly facilitate event planning for housing organisations and offer both a flexible and tried and tested approach.

TPAS events are informative and interactive, yet informal and fun. We can suggest a variety of different approaches for making events enjoyable whilst ensuring there is meaningful participation.

Although our approach is different for each event, our help with event planning consists of:

  • Recommending appropriate venues
  • Preparing information for tenants
  • Assisting with promotion and tenant bookings
  • Facilitating consultation event and any breakout / workshop sessions
  • Provide independent feedback report
Get Accredited

TPAS Scotland Accreditation

We have launched a product called TPAS Accreditation. It is a robust and structured process for assessing how well organisations involve tenants and residents in their service.

TPAS Accreditation is aimed at landlords and contractors, the requirements for landlords and contractors are naturally different.

Organisations are asked to complete a self assessment framework explaining how they involve tenants and residents.They will have to demonstrate how they pass certain ‘compentencies’in resident involvement. There are 11 compentencies that landlords have to pass and 10 for contractors.

We will then hold ‘focus group’interviews with tenants, staff anf other key stakeholders. The aim of these sessions is to ‘test’ whether residents involvement measures are running as intended.

A feedback report will be completed explaining whether organisations have passed or failed the required competencies. If the organisation fails certain elements we will outline what measures should be put in place to meet the required standard and revist you in 3 to 6 months.

Organisations that successfully complete our criteria will qualify for our prestigious Accreditation mark for 3 years.

Contractors Accreditation

TPAS Accreditation for Contractors

TPAS Scotland has developed a tenant participation accreditation scheme. The scheme is intended to recognise best practice in tenant participation.

Contractors will complete a self assessment framework explaining how they (together with their partner landlord) involve tenants and residents. They will have to show evidence of how they comply with key competencies in resident involvement. There are 10 separate competencies.

TPAS will then seek to verify this self assessment through a process of desktop assessment and semi structured interviews with tenants, contractor staff and the contractors’ clients. TPAS will also involve an independent scrutiny panel in assessing the performance of the contractor. The aim of this process is to test if resident involvement is functioning as intended.

We then complete a feedback report explaining whether contractors have passed or failed the required competencies. If your organisation fails we will outline the steps that we think need to be taken to meet the required standard. Depending on the steps required this process could take between 3 and 6 months before we can re-assess your organisation.

Competencies for Contractors:

  • The contractor is positive about supporting community initiatives
  • The contractor ensures that its staff are trained in and are positive about resident involvement
  • The contractor has a resident involvement and customer care strategy
  • The partnership (contractor & landlord) offers a menu for involvement
  • The partnership (contractor & landlord) enables resident performance monitoring and management at a corporate level
  • The partnership (contractor & landlord) has arrangements that ensure local accountability of the repairs service
  • The partnership (contractor & landlord) profiles its residents and acts upon that profile
  • The partnership (contractor & landlord) actively surveys residents’ views
  • The partnership (contractor & landlord) provides good information
  • The partnership (contractor & landlord) ensures that residents receive good feedback information
Landlords Accreditation

TPAS Accreditation for Landlords

TPAS will then seek to verify this self assessment through a process of desktop assessment and semi structured interviews with tenants, staff and other key stakeholders. TPAS will also involve an independent scrutiny panel in assessing the performance of the landlord. The aim of this process is to test if resident involvement is functioning as intended.

We then complete a feedback report explaining whether landlords have passed or failed the required competencies. If your organisation fails we will outline the steps that we think need to be taken to meet the required standard. Depending on the steps required this process could take between 3 and 6 months before we can re-assess your organisation.

Competencies for Landlords:

  • The landlord has a tenant participation strategy
  • The key components of the strategy are in place
  • Tenants are involved in decision making processes
  • The landlord provides good information to tenants
  • There are sufficient resources and support to enable effective tenant participation
  • Staff have good awareness of tenant participation
  • There are effective tenant involvement structures
  • The landlord and tenants measure performance
  • The landlord is committed to promoting equal opportunities
  • The landlord works in partnership with tenants
  • The landlord has realistic timescales for tenant participation

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