Tuesday 13th December 2022
Update from the DIO Accommodation Team 13/12/2022:
Subscribe to Accommodation contract updates: Service Family Accommodation (www.gov.uk)
Update of FDIS performance
DIO and its suppliers Pinnacle, VIVO and Amey are all committed to improving performance for families, with service improvement targeted through plans for:
- Preparation of homes for Move-In
- Repair and maintenance response times
- National Service Centre call wait times
- Enhanced care for families placed in temporary accommodation
- Go Beyond Team
- Winter planning
For full details on the action DIO is taking to improve the performance of the accommodation contracts, please go to Service Family Accommodation – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) where you can also subscribe for update notifications.
Support with emergency and urgent issues regarding your home over the festive period
Please contact the National Service Centre (NSC) if you need to raise an urgent issue, such as a loss of heating or hot water, over the festive period. The NSC is open 24 hours a day. Call 0800 0318628, Option 1. If you experience any significant welfare concerns that you cannot resolve with the NSC then please contact your unit duty welfare staff who will be able to escalate the issue for you. However, you must raise the issue with the NSC in the first instance.
Reporting incidences on damp and mould
DIO and its suppliers take reports of damp and mould extremely seriously and have a robust plan in place to deal with reports of damp and mould in your homes. We are investing £73m this year on replacement windows, doors, roofs and upgrades to thermal efficiency and ventilation to reduce the occurrence of damp and mould in your homes.
In addition, since early 2022 DIO stopped allocating homes with a known damp or mould issue. This includes homes where a professional survey has recommended works that have not yet been completed, or where the previous family reported damp and mould, but no survey has been completed. Homes are also inspected between Move-Outs and Move-Ins and surveys are undertaken on homes where there are grounds to suspect they might be vulnerable to damp and mould.
If you have any concerns regarding damp and mould in your home then please call the National Service Centre on 0800 031 8628, select Option 1 Repairs and then go to Option 4 to report damp and mould specifically. If you have a child under the age of 5 in your home, or a vulnerable family member, then your call should automatically become an urgent task that will be responded to within 48 hours.
Any reports of damp and mould are now investigated by a professional surveyor. If the problem cannot be resolved quickly, if it is particularly severe or if a family member has a known vulnerability, then families will be offered alternative accommodation.
How to help prevent damp and mould in your home
Mould and damp are caused by excess moisture which could be created by leaks in your roof, pipes or window frames, or by condensation inside your home.
Condensation is caused by humidity; when the air inside your home is made moist and warm by activities like cooking, showering or drying clothes, and can’t escape through an open window or extractor fan. Condensation causes more problems in the winter time, when houses are kept warmer inside and windows are less likely to be opened.
If condensation isn’t dealt with immediately, it can encourage mould to grow, particularly in places such as walls, window sills and ceilings. Simple steps to reduce the risk of mould caused by condensation include:
- Wiping away moisture on window sills
- Not drying clothes on radiators but rather on a clothes rack
- When you are taking a bath or shower, keeping windows open or using the extractor fan
- Ventilating your home when possible by opening windows
- Trying to keep your home at a constant temperature – at least 15 degrees C in cold weather even if you are out of the house.
- Never covering air vents flues or air blocks
- Trying to keep a gap between your furniture and the wall to allow air to circulate
Nevertheless, condensation, damp and mould can also be a sign of structural issues, which is why it is important to report issues so that they can be professionally investigated.
You can remove mould from walls, using a cloth, water and a mild detergent or a domestic mould and mildew remover. Further details for details for dealing with damp and mould can also be found here.
However, if you have any concerns then please call the National Service Centre on 0800 031 8628, select Option 1 Repairs and then go to Option 4 to report damp and mould.