Modernising Council homes

Harlow Council’s biggest ever investment and transformation of Council homes continues with 34,688 improvements completed so far helping to transform tenants’ homes.

Modern Council home with tenantThe Council’s Modern Homes Programme, which is funded by rents and grants secured by the Council, is now in its third year. With over £45m spent on improvements in the last two years the Council has met the Government’s Decent Homes standard. A further £25m is to be spent in 2015/16 to continue improvements.

Since June 2013 the programme has seen:

  • 2,660 kitchens and 2,147 bathrooms replaced.
  • 4,578 new front and back doors and 11,638 new windows installed.
  • 1,648 central heating systems and another 1,319 energy efficient boilers installed.
  • New fuse boxes put in 1,666 homes which have also included the installation of 2,380 new smoke detectors.
  • Carried out electrical safety tests in 6,059 homes.

The programme has also made 472 of the coldest Council homes, which were suffering from damp, drier and warmer. These homes have benefitted from external wall insulation helping to reduce energy bills for tenants.

Modern Council home kitchen

What tenants have said about the programme:

“Our kitchen is now both neat and tidy, which is important for a better standard of living. Our property feels like home now, which every family in Harlow deserves.” Thomson family

“I have recently had work carried out within my home, to completely overhaul my bathroom, lavatory and kitchen and although I have waited a long time to have the work done, it was worth the wait!” Patricia Scanlon

“I’m really happy with the new windows. The work was carried out quickly and efficiently and it’s made such a difference - my home is much warmer now.” Miss Dozzell

Our new bathroom is brilliant and has made a great difference to our lives. The old bathroom was definitely ready to be replaced and we are really happy with the result.” Mr. Verguson

"External wall insulation has made a really big difference to my home and my life. My home was warmer last winter and cooler this summer. It's also made a difference to energy bills which are noticeably lower since the work was done. I'm really happy." Mrs Dove

This year the Council also plans to carry out a number of other major improvements to homes.

This will include:

  • Energy improvements and upgrades to communal and district heating systems, helping to tackle fuel poverty.
  • Energy improvement and environmental works to some of the town’s tower blocks.
  • Improvement works to garage blocks.
  • A range of adaptations to improve mobility for tenants who require such work.

Programme plans

You can view the current programme for 2015-16 and the outline programme for future years. The programmes show the improvements being carried out per ward and in individual streets. Individual homes are not identified for security reasons.

These programmes give details of the estates and not individual homes. Homes in Aylets Field, The Briars and Copshall Close are not included in this programme.

For more information please contact an Advisor at Contact Harlow.

All works were originally identified in the 2012 Stock Condition Survey. The Council has visited homes to confirm the work is still required, after which detailed programmes will be drawn up. An initial letter was sent to all tenants who are on this provisional programme during April 2015. In the case of internal work this gave an indication on whether the work will be carried out during the period April to September 2015 or October 2015 to March 2016.

The Council is working with three main contractors this year (2015-16).

  • United Living (previously known as United House) will continue with the internal work fitting kitchens bathrooms and heating systems in our tenants homes, preventing homes falling out of the Government’s Decent Homes Standard.
  • Kier through our agreement with Kier Harlow will deliver the window and door programme this year and will continue with a smaller internal programme of kitchens and bathrooms.
  • Mulalley will deliver our new programme of work to external and communal areas.

As in previous years tenants and leaseholders will be contacted about any works that affect them. Leaseholders will have a 30 day statutory consultation where they can give the Council their comments on the works and estimates before the works starts. The contractor will issue you with an information pack before any work start which will include details of the following:

  • What works will be undertaken.
  • The length of time we expect the works to take.
  • What levels of disruption you can expect.
  • Key points of contact and emergency telephone numbers.

Each area of works will be managed by a Harlow team of Project Manager Clerk of Works and Customer Care Officer who will be available to you to resolve any problems you experience while work is on site.

More information for Leaseholders on paying for major works

Modern Homes drop-in sessions

Sessions are held in the Civic Centre reception for tenants who wish to discuss their home improvements as part of the Modern Homes Programme:

Frequently Asked Questions