Homelessness and Housing Advice Service Charter

Housing Advice Team

Our Housing Advice Team offers a comprehensive housing advice service, which is free and confidential. They will be happy to advise on any housing problem you have, and if your case warrants it, will do follow up work such as writing letters, and undertaking research on your housing problem. They will advise on average 2,500 people in a year, of whom about 1,000 will be seen for the first time.

Homelessness Team

The Homelessness Team deal with people applying to the Council as homeless under the law. The law which sets out how the Council has to deal with the homeless is called the Housing Act (1996) Part 7. Their job is to assess your application, which is done by interview and background investigations, and which the law requires us to do. They will also assist you if you need emergency accommodation. Finally, they will make a recommendation as to whether the Council will be able to assist, and if so, what assistance will be provided.

What are our Customer Service Commitments?

We will:

  • provide an efficient and effective service at all times
  • provide accurate and up to date information on the Council's policies and practices in relation to housing and homelessness
  • be polite and courteous at all times
  • deal with any complaint you have in an open, professional and fair manner
  • regularly ask for your opinions, and seek suggestions on the services we run
  • tell you about our performance standards and how well we meet them
  • reply to your letters or take necessary action on them within 2 weeks
  • answer the telephone within 3 rings
  • see you within 5 minutes of your appointment time

For users of the Housing Advice Service

  • guarantee an appointment within 10 working days
  • deal with emergency cases within 1 working day

For users of the Homelessness Service

  • make a decision on your case at the earliest possible date
  • guarantee an appointment within 5 working days if you are threatened with homelessness (sooner if you will be homeless within the 5 days)
  • guarantee you a same date appointment if you are actually homeless.

How we can help if you have special needs

We will:

  • interview you at a convenient place, if you are unable to come to our office
  • ensure that you only see a female officer if you prefer
  • arrange for an interpreter if necessary
  • provide audio tapes of our leaflets for people with visual problems
  • provide wheelchair accessible offices and facilities
  • make appropriate arrangements for people with hearing difficulties

What we can do if things go wrong

We aim to provide an efficient and effective service at all times. However, things do go wrong and when this happens we want to put them right quickly. We promise at all times to give you an explanation of our actions, and if we have done something wrong to put it right and apologise.


If you have a complaint about any part of the Housing Advice and Homelessness Service, you should first contact your Case Worker. If you are not happy with their response and would like to make a formal complaint, please use the Council's complaints procedure.


 

Related pages

Homelessness and Housing Advice - Equal Opportunities

Homelessness

Housing Information and Advice

Contact details

Housing Advice Service
Stevenage Borough Council
Daneshill House
Danestrete
Stevenage
Herts
SG1 1HN

01438 242242
housing@stevenage.gov.uk

Housing Advice and Homelessness
Stevenage Borough Council
Daneshill House
Danestrete
Stevenage
Herts
SG1 1HN

01438 242242
homeless@stevenage.gov.uk