Tenant Services During COVID-19 Pandemic

In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, on Wednesday 25 March Access Housing temporarily closed our Rivervale, Mandurah and Bunbury offices until further notice.

The majority of our staff are working remotely / out of the office to encourage physical distancing and minimise contact between staff and tenants.

Access Housing will, however, continue to provide a high standard of service to our tenants, but it will be a slightly different kind of service delivered through a different way of working. We have made each decision carefully in order to protect our staff, our tenants and our maintenance contractors as best we reasonably can whilst we continue to provide services to tenants. Our decision to change the way we work is guided by Federal and State Government Health Department recommendations.

Just like you, Access Housing is dealing with a particularly tumultuous set of circumstances at the moment. We kindly ask that a level of patience, understanding and kindness is afforded to our staff as we navigate the days and weeks ahead whilst also continuing to serve you as best we can.

How our services to tenants will be different during the COVID-19 pandemic:


CALLING YOUR TENANCY OFFICER OR ANOTHER STAFF MEMBER
Even though our offices are closed until further notice, you will still be able to get in touch with us. When you ring our offices, you will hear a forwarding voice message. It is important you leave your name and phone number and tell us the name of the person you want to contact. Our staff will get back to you as soon as possible.

If you know the name of your Tenancy Officer and would like to talk to them directly, please see the table below for their direct phone number:


Please make sure you have supplied your Tenancy Officer with your most up-to-date phone number and email address if you have one.

VERIFICATION OF YOUR IDENTITY
As our communication with you will be verbally, by text or by email, we need to make sure it’s really you. If you have set up a Security Question, we’ll use that or we’ll ask you to create one. We will also use a Verification Code that we will send to your mobile via SMS and may ask additional questions that only you would know the answer to, so we can confirm that it’s really you we’re speaking with.

MAINTENANCE
To ensure the safety of tenants and contractors during the COVID-19 outbreak, we have changed how we will be undertaking maintenance repairs until further notice. Please click here for more information.

Please continue to report all repairs or damages promptly to our Maintenance Hotline on 1800 203 383 (free call from land line). This service operates during normal office hours (8:00am-4:00pm Monday to Friday).

An emergency service is available outside of these hours. Please see our After Hours Emergency Service webpage for more information.

EMAILS
All of our staff continue to be contactable via email. Please make sure we have your most up-to-date email address (if you have an email address). If you have a generic enquiry, please email info@accesshousing.org.au.

INSPECTIONS
All routine inspections are postponed until further notice.

TENANT ENGAGEMENT ACTIVITIES
All face-to-face tenant engagement activities, including focus groups and Advisory Committee of Tenant (ACT) meetings, are on hold until further notice.

We recognise this is a difficult time for many and that staying connected is more important than ever. In line with this, Access Housing is going to continue to provide some of our programs and deliver them in a different way. We are also developing some other ways you can stay involved and connected with us in the days and weeks ahead.

For more information about our tenant engagement activities during our office closure period, please contact:

Alex Kepes
Tenant Engagement and
Capacity Building Officer
P: 9430 0945
M: 0437 887 675
E: alex.kepes@accesshousing.org.au
Amy Kidner
Tenant Consultation and
Communications Officer
P: 9430 0923
M: 0429 858 127
E: amy.kidner@accesshousing.org.au


YOUR RENT

Access Housing will continue to undertake and complete Rent Reviews and tenants are expected to pay rent, however we recognise that this is a time of extreme hardship and financial uncertainty for many of our tenants. If you are experiencing difficulties paying rent, please call our Rent Review and Debt Recovery Teams.

TENANT REQUESTS
All tenant requests will be reviewed and processed as normal, including requests for alterations and modifications, pets and transfers.

Please note that tenants are still required to complete the appropriate forms and paperwork for their requests.

While we will be processing transfer requests, we won’t be transferring tenants until further notice unless it is an emergency.

Please contact your Tenancy Officer if you would like more information.

COMPLAINTS AND APPEALS
If you are unhappy with a staff member, a maintenance contractor or with a decision we have made, you have the right to make a complaint or an appeal. Access Housing will continue to investigate and deal with complaints and appeals whilst staff work remotely.

ANTI-SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR
We will continue to respond to, investigate and act on anti-social behaviour and nuisance complaints. Our investigations of these complaints will be carried out by phone, email and mail.

We will take necessary action against tenants who cause serious damage or cause, or are likely to cause, injury to anyone. We ask that tenants be respectful, patient and understanding with each other during this particularly trying time.

IF YOU WANT TO END YOUR TENANCY
If you would like to end your tenancy, please contact your Tenancy Officer or call 9430 0900 and leave a detailed message so we can get in touch with you about your intentions.

If you have any queries about how we will be working during the evolving COVID-19 situation, please call 9430 0900 and leave a detailed message, contact your Tenancy Officer directly or email info@accesshousing.org.au and we will respond as soon as we can.

The COVID-19 situation is changing rapidly, so it’s important to stay informed. For up-to-date information about COVID-19, please visit the following trusted and credible websites:

www.health.gov.au for the latest information from the Federal Health Department
www.health.wa.gov.au for the latest information from the WA Health Department

You can also call the National Coronavirus Helpline on 1800 020 080 or visit the World Health Organisation website on www.who.int.

For the most up-to-date information about Access Housing’s business operations during the unfolding COVID-19 situation, please continue to refer to our website.