Report and Consilidated Financial Statements
"In 2018, we successfully maintained our Governance and Viability rating of G1/V1, the top rating available, following an in-depth assessment by the Regulator of Social Housing. We involved our residents in responding to the consultation on the Governments's Social Housing Green Paper, and we are continuing to adapt to the changing shape of consumer and fire safety regulation which are emerging in the aftermath of the tragic events at Grenfell Tower in 2017.
West Kent's financial strength means we are well placed to deliver more homes that are greatly needed. Our plan is to build over 280 homes a year, and we currently have 425 new builds under contract to complete over the next three years. We are committed to build a mix of homes, including social rent, affordable rent and shared ownership.
In common with most organisations, the uncertainty around Brexit was high on the board agenda in 2018 and continues into 2019. We have clear plans to maintain our services and protect liquidity in the event of the potential disruptions of a 'no deal' Brexit.
We have responded to the major changes in the benefit system by increasing resources to enable us to have a proactive relationship with tenants moving onto Universal Credit. The rent arrears for this group are higher than comparable groups. This is to do with residents learning how to to navigate the systems and adopting new habits of paying their rent themselves. We introduced any-day direct debits in 2018 to enable residents to select the rent payment day that best suits their individual circumstances.
As always, I thank the staff at West Kent for their hard work and commitment, which was recognised in 2018 by retaining our Investor in People Gold accreditation.
On our website there is our residents annual report, which illustrates all the great work we have achieved in the year. There is a separate report on the impact of our wide reaching and excellent community activities, working with partners, residents and volunteers across the county."
Colin Wilby, Chair of the Board