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Our reception is now closed until further notice

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We feel that the time is right to close our offices to the public from today (23/03/20).

This decision comes as we all continue to monitor the ever evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, and governmental advice on social-distancing.

The safety of our residents, colleagues and visitors is incredibly important to us, and why we must take this next step.

Although our doors may now be closed, we are still here for you. You can continue to contact our Customer Service Team by;

Calling 01726 874450
Emailing enquiries@oceanhousing.com
Using LiveChat
Downloading the Ocean app
 And more – please visit our website for details

Further information about our response to COVID-19 and changes to our usual services can be found at www.oceanhousing.com/coronavirus/ where we have been posting regular updates.

Last week our chief executive, Mark Gardner, also published a message on our website.

He said: “We want to thank all our tenants and staff for their patience and understanding during this difficult period.

“We will continue to keep our website updated with the latest information. I want to reassure our tenants that we will still be available to help and support them through these challenging times.”

A message from the chief executive – supporting tenants the priority at Ocean Housing

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As the situation around COVID-19 continues to develop, our chief executive is reassuring tenants and staff alike that Ocean continues to put them at the heart of everything.

Health and safety and tenant services continue to be the priority of all at Ocean Housing, despite the coronavirus outbreak. Our team is committed to delivering services, albeit on a slightly reduced scale, in-line with the latest Government guidelines to limit potential exposure to the virus.

“We have been following the government’s advice, and are monitoring the situation very closely to ensure that we keep both our residents and staff safe”, said Mark Gardner, Ocean Housing Group’s chief executive.

“We have a number of staff working remotely, and on a rotational working policy, but our robust systems are working well, which means we can continue to deliver services to our tenants.”

Visits to tenants are continuing as usual, with prior screening questions for the benefit of staff and tenants, and with all the appropriate health, safety, and hygiene practices in place.

In addition to standard advice and support services, we are offering intensive support to tenants who find themselves in rent arrears or who are worried about paying their rent.

Mark continued: “We will not seek to evict any tenant for rent arrears due to coronavirus, but tenants still have to pay their rent. However, tenants have two rent free weeks at this time of year.

“We would urge tenants to use the Ocean app, their AllPay card or direct debit to pay their rent. If any of our tenants have concerns then I would ask them to get in contact with us as soon as possible.”

Ocean introduced its new app at the start of the year, which has become more useful than ever over the last few weeks. It can be downloaded for free via either the Google Play or Apple App stores by searching for ‘Ocean Housing’.

Our repair services are running at a reduced level, with priority being given to health and safety work and inspections, and emergencies such as water leaks and loss of utilities supply. These repairs can be reported on the app, along with functions such as paying rent, and accessing social media updates.

Loraine Hoar, Customer Accounts manager, added: “We know that this is a difficult time for many of our tenants, however we can support you to claim any benefits that you may be entitled to claim, if you have been effected by illness, self-isolation, school or work closures.

“We want to reassure our tenants that we will still be available to help and support them through these challenging times.” – Mark Gardner, Ocean Housing Group chief executive.

“If you have had a change of circumstances and you are already claiming universal credit or housing benefit, it’s important that you update them and continue to pay your rent as normal. We are here to help you through this and have specialist team members who can offer debt advice and complete benefit calculators to establish what you may be entitled to.”

With the community pulling together in this challenging time, Mark concluded: “We want to thank all our tenants and staff for their patience and understanding during this difficult period. We will continue to keep our website updated with the latest information, and will be sharing useful links via our social media.”

“Finally, I want to reassure our tenants that if government advice is escalated we will still be available to help and support our tenants through these challenging times.”

For up-to-date information and advice from Ocean Housing about the coronavirus, visit oceanhousing.com/coronavirus.

First Ocean Community Action Day of 2020 a sunny success in Newquay

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Ocean Housing hosted its first community action day of 2020 in fine weather.

Our ‘Spring into Action’ event was held at Hawkins Road in Newquay on Wednesday March 11. It was an opportunity for residents to meet the Ocean Housing team, spring clean their homes, and gain some free advice from other local services.

Abigail Vercoe, Tenant Involvement coordinator, organised the event.

“It was a great day, and we had some positive discussions with residents about ways to improve the community atmosphere,” she said.

“Community action days are really important for our team to gain a better understanding of the issues faced by residents in the area, as well as giving our tenants the chance to access free advice and useful tips for running their home.

“Whether our residents wanted to learn how to raise a repair request, discuss heating issues, or get further information on Universal Credit, Ocean Housing staff were on hand to provide assistance and answer any questions.”

Other local agencies offering advice on the day included Cornwall Council, Harbour Housing, Outset Cornwall, Devon and Cornwall Police, and South West Water.

“I was really impressed with Ocean Housing. It was a great example of how a successful modern housing association should interact with their tenants” – Olly Monk, Cornwall Councillor.

Ocean Housing also provided a skip, which gave tenants the chance to dispose of unwanted household items. It was returned full to capacity, with many residents taking the opportunity to clear some valuable space at home.

Newquay Treloggan and Mayfield councillor, Olly Monk, also attended the event. He said: “I was really impressed with Ocean Housing, and the organisation of the community action day. It was a great example of how a successful modern housing association should interact with their tenants.

“As Cornwall Councillor for the area, I know how much the residents appreciated the level of response by Ocean Housing’s team when addressing any concerns they had. Well done all.”

Abigail concluded: “We would like to thank everyone who turned up and played a part in the day. A special thanks to Maggie’s Mobile Barista for providing refreshments to keep everyone going.”

Plans to host further community actions days throughout the year in other locations are being made.

Further details on the ways to get involved in your community can be found here: https://bit.ly/2TLbaMg

Gardening success for Ocean Housing residents in St Columb

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Green-fingered residents from Ivydene House, St Columb

Ocean Housing tenants from St Columb, who were rewarded for their gardening success in 2019, are keen to keep up the good work this year.

Ivydene House, St Columb, is for residents over 55 and has 12 one-bedroomed flats. There is a grass/shrub area alongside a communal courtyard which is maintained by Ocean.

One resident, Eric, felt the courtyard could ‘do with being brought to life’. So, with Eric’s love of gardening and the help of his neighbours, a brilliant space of colourful pots and plants has been created.

“I love looking out of my window, it’s looking really beautiful,” said Greta, 90, who we spoke to last summer.

Eric added: “It’s been fantastic bringing the community together and we are all enjoying the outside space.”

Read more: ‘Meet Clive, a true Ocean Housing community champion‘.

The newfound space was put to good use in no time. Residents enjoy many tea parties, while toasting and enjoying the fruits of their labour.

Their work and commitment did not go unnoticed. Delivery and bus drivers, and even customers from a nearby pub, came to investigate and pay compliments.

Soon the word was out. It was not too long before, thanks to so many comments from residents and visitors, the team decided to enter the Newquay in Bloom Competition.

When the results were announced in August they were delighted to win First Prize for Best Courtyard/Small Garden.

“All of us were very delighted to win something,” added Irene, Eric’s wife. “We didn’t expect to win – we didn’t enter to win.

“We entered it, just to bring people together really.”

With such a successful summer the green-fingered residents could perhaps have been forgiven for taking it easy in the winter. But no, they kept up the good work throughout and are already planning to do the same in spring and summer.

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Would you like to bring some colour to your courtyard or communal area or organise an event for your neighbours to enjoy?

Then why not apply to the treasure chest!?

The Tenants and Residents Panel can grant up to £400 per application each year, for more information contact the Tenant Involvement Team on 01726 874450 or visit www.oceanhousing.com/treasure-chest

Information and advice about Coronavirus (COVID-19)Read more
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