Our research

Research helps us understand our residents and tailor services to their needs.

It helps us spot trends, predict patterns and assess impacts. This makes our strategies and policies more resident focussed.

We want to be recognised for thought leadership and influence policy and practice at local and national levels.

You can read about our research below.

Success, Satisfaction and Scrutiny

Published March 2015
Authors University of Westminster, AmicusHorizon
Commissioned by Department for Communities and Local Government
Contact Charles Glover-Short, Senior Research Analyst

Success, Satisfaction and Scrutiny is a first of its kind report into the business benefits of involving residents in scrutiny and decision making.

Key findings:

  • The benefits of engagement far outweigh the costs. Case studies show involving residents in procurement and complaints handling has helped us save £2.7m annually
  • Resident satisfaction increases with the opportunities you provide. We’ve achieved the highest levels of satisfaction of any large social landlord in the UK (97% overall satisfaction with services)
  • Resident engagement in governance has created a better working environment. Resident meetings are effective, with difficult conversations conducted within an atmosphere of openness and trust
  • Staff, board members and residents have embedded a ‘One Team’ culture. The notion of ‘One Team’ - all working together towards a clearly defined set of goals - underpins everything we do
  • Involving residents means we have a constant feedback loop. Residents are our consultants and co-producers, designing, testing and feeding back directly on our services.
We’ve produced a toolkit to help landlords get more out of resident involvement. It's called Success, Satisfaction and Scrutiny: the Resident Involvement Toolkit.

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The IFORE (Innovation for Renewal) project improved the carbon efficiency of 100 homes in Rushenden, Kent.

'Combining energy efficient technology with high quality energy advice is essential for achieving lasting change'.

These were the findings of our cross-channel retrofit project 'IFORE' launched in 2010.
Evidence showed a strong positive correlation between successful retrofit programmes and wider community development. It proved an intensive four year 'test and learn' initiative.

We transformed over 100 homes to be super energy efficient, saving an average of £500 per home on bills. We engaged over 1,000 residents, created 3,000 young energy champions and encouraged nearly 80 people into  vocational training.

Elements of the work on homes in Rushenden, Kent were replicated by Pas-de-Calais habitat, a French housing association in Outreau, northern France. The measures carried out in both communities were monitored by the University of Brighton and the Université D'Artois.

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Tenancy Sustainment

Published May 2015
Authors Campbell Tickell, the Guinness Partnership, Consortium of Associations in the South East (CASE)
Commissioned by The Guinness Partnership
Contact Charles Glover-Short, Senior Research Analyst

Offering residents a roof over their head and a repairs service is just part of what a housing association does. This research looks at why housing associations offer support that goes beyond the basic services in a tenancy agreement. And, in a changing world where the report suggests evictions are on the up, it looks at what’s being done to help residents sustain their tenancies.

Key findings:

  • Housing associations differ in what activities they ‘brand’ as tenancy sustainment. Some define it as just the work of their Tenancy Sustainment Officers. Others use it as an ‘umbrella term’ to include the work of other teams such as ‘Community Development’, ‘Energy Advice’ and ‘Financial Inclusion’
  • Housing associations have redoubled their efforts to sustain tenancies due to a number of factors like welfare reform and increasing awareness of the financial costs of tenancy failure
  • Housing associations are keen to understand which interventions work best. With resources limited, landlords want to get the 'biggest bang for their buck'
  • It’s not easy to assess the impact of tenancy sustainment work, but housing associations are developing methods.

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Capping Aspiration


May 2017

Authors Sheffield Hallam University, Consortium of Associations in the South East (CASE)
Commissioned by CASE
Contact Charles Glover-Short, Senior Research Analyst

Government intends to extend Local Housing Allowance caps to social housing in April 2019. Single residents under 35 will be hit especially hard since they’ll only be entitled to the Shared Accommodation Rate (SAR) - the rate for a single room in a shared house. This report from Sheffield Hallam University explores some of the impacts and suggests ways housing associations might seek to limit the impact.

Key findings:

  • Most residents on housing benefit will face a shortfall once the SAR is applied in 2019. 84% of current, single social housing residents in the South East would face a shortfall if the SAR were applied to their current claim. That equates to about 12,500 young people. Areas in Kent and the western fringe of London have some of the highest proportions of residents likely to be affected
  • This reflects the nature of housing associations’ stock. We’ve very few shared homes, and those we do have are typically specialised accommodation such as supported housing (which thankfully will be exempt from the SAR). Housing associations’ homes and management arrangements reflect traditional housing priorities: providing self-contained homes for families and older people
  • Residents could face substantial shortfalls. The average weekly shortfall across the South East is around £55, leaving residents with less than £18 a week to cover all other living costs. A young person under 25 on Job Seeker’s Allowance would be left with just £2.79 per week to live on
  • Housing associations are lobbying against the policy. CASE members are encouraging Government to conduct a thorough review of the impacts of the SAR. If Government goes ahead with the policy, we want to make sure some of the worst consequences are avoided. Amongst other things, that will mean clear and wide-ranging exemption criteria, robust transitional arrangements and measures to support housing associations develop homes suitable for and affordable to single under 35s.

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