Two Towers Housing Co-op Ltd has a Management Agreement (a legally binding contract) with Southwark Council which sets out in detail all of the services it must provide and those which Southwark continues to provide.
The Agreement includes nine chapters and a number of schedules linked to each chapter of the Agreement and each area of responsibility. The schedules include all of the TMO’s key policies and procedures.
A full copy of the schedules is kept in the TMC Office.
Chapter 1 – General provisions
This chapter sets out the nature of the contract between the Council and Two Towers, how it can be changed or ended. It also states that the TMO must carry out a ballot every 5 years to determine whether residents want the TMO to continue to manage the estate.
The schedules to this chapter include a detailed map of the TMO’s area and boundaries, a list of properties that the TMO manages and the Equalities Policy. It also includes a supervision procedure which the Council can initiate if the TMO is not performing its responsibilities in accordance with the agreement.
Chapter 2 – Repairs and maintenance
This chapter sets out all of the repairs and estate services such as cleaning and gardening that the TMO will be responsible for.
The schedules set out the tasks in detail – what the TMO must do and what the Council must do and to what standard the works must be carried out.
Chapter 3 – Rents
This chapter explains that the TMO is responsible for rent collection and arrears control. The chapter includes information on how Housing Benefit is dealt with and how the Council will set rents annually.
The schedules include detailed procedures on how the TMO collects rents, chases arrears and in what circumstances legal action will be taken.
Chapter 4 – Leaseholder and Freeholder Service Charge Collection
This chapter states that the TMO will not be responsible for any tasks relating to leaseholders service charge collection these tasks will continue to be carried out by Southwark Council. All statutory consultation with leaseholders will also be carried out by the Council even if the TMO is carrying out the actual work that is to be re-charged to them.
The TMO will be required to provide information to Southwark Council regarding its expenditure on estate and communal items that may be re-charged to leaseholders.
Chapter 5 – Financial management
This chapter sets out how Two Towers will manage its finances. The Agreement requires the TMO to have its accounts audited annually, to prepare a budget for the year and to keep a close check on expenditure and report regularly to the Council.
If Two Towers makes a surplus, it can be used towards meeting the TMO’s objectives which are providing, improving and managing housing services and the estate.
The schedules include the detail of how the Council calculates the management and maintenance allowances for the TMO and how they can be reviewed in the future. There are also schedules setting out the detailed financial management procedures and accounting procedures.
Chapter 6 – Tenancy management
This chapter deals with new and introductory tenancies and the tenancy agreement. The chapter states that the TMO must investigate breaches of tenancy or leases and to collect evidence to enable the Council to take legal action against tenants or leaseholders. This includes anti social behaviour.
The schedules set out detailed procedures in all of the tenancy management areas such as complaints, assignments, mutual exchanges and giving consents.
Chapter 7 – Staffing and the relationship with the council
This chapter deals with staffing, Liaison with the Council, complaints and disputes. Two Towers is responsible for employing its own members of staff and for its contractors and consultants.
The schedules set out the Complaints Procedures and also the Disputes and Arbitration procedure should the TMO and the Council have a serious disagreement which cannot be resolved.
Chapter 8 – Performance Monitoring and Reviewing of Standards
This chapter includes all of the performance standards that Two Towers and the Council must meet with regard to services and the way they both operate. The Council holds regular monitoring and development meetings with the TMO. Two Towers must produce an annual report of their performance and must monitor our performance in relation to the Equal opportunities policy.
Chapter 9 – Definition of terms used in the agreement
This chapter includes an explanation of all of the terms included in the Agreement.