What’s included in the new Tenant Satisfaction Measures (TSMs)

12 December 2022, 1:58 PM

By Suzanne Fanton

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A new standard in Tenant Satisfaction Measures comes into force on 1 April 2023. Here Intratone looks at how this new standard affects social housing landlords, and what technology is on offer to help meet the requirements of the TSM standard. 

From 1 April 2023, social housing landlords will be subject to new levels of tenant accountability. This accountability comes from the UK Regulator of Social Housing’s new system to standardise Tenant Satisfaction Measures or TSMs.

Here Intratone looks at what tenant satisfaction measures mean for social housing landlords and how the Interactive Digital Noticeboard from Intratone can help meet the requirements of the TSMs.

What the Tenant Satisfaction Measures mean for social housing landlords

The UK Government’s ‘Charter for Social Housing Residents’ has been several years in the making, first being published in 2020. The underlying remit of the charter is the improvement of social housing across the UK. One of the core features of the charter is to develop a standardised system of landlord accountability. To achieve this, the charter includes ‘Tenant Satisfaction Measures’ or TSMs. A consultation paper on the TSMs was released on 9 December 2021; the consultation period closed on 3 March 2022.

The consultation attracted 1,098 responses from social housing tenants, councils, housing associations and others in the sector. The outcome of this consultation was finally published on 21 September 2022.

The consultation outcome was consensus, with the paper authors concluding:

The majority of respondents supported the proposed TSMs and considered that the TSM suite would work in providing rounded information to tenants about their landlord’s performance.

Now that the consultation period is complete, the next step will be the enforcement of the new TSM requirements. In total, there will be 22 TSMs that social housing landlords must adhere to. The Social Housing Regulator is expected to include the TSM Standard as part of the regulatory consumer standards.

Main areas covered by the TSMs                  

One of the reasons for the development of standardised TSMs has been the previously ad hoc way social landlords have produced and published performance information. This non-standard way of providing performance data has made landlord performance more difficult for tenants to interpret. The new tenant surveys and landlord data cover five main areas:

  1. Repairs
  2. Building safety
  3. Complaint-handling
  4. Respectful and helpful tenant engagement
  5. Responsible neighbourhood management.

What do the 22 TSMs cover?

The consultation has resulted in 22 TSMs covering 12 tenant perception measures (TPMs) and ten management information (MI) measures:

  • Overall satisfaction (one TPM)
  • Keeping properties in good repair (two MIs and three TPMs)
  • Maintaining Building Safety (five MIs and one TPM)
  • Respectful and Helpful Engagement (three TPMs)
  • Effective Handling of complaints (two MIs and one TPM)
  • Responsible neighbourhood management (one MI and three TPMs)

Tenant perception surveys and TSMs

One of the questions highlighted in the consultation paper on TSMs was the concept of a tenant perception survey: a tenant perception survey is used to generate the TSM. Over three-quarters of the consultation paper respondents agreed that these sorts of surveys were good. From this insight, a publication setting out the scope of tenant surveys was released in readiness for April 2023. The paper describes the survey framework needed to generate tenant perception measures. The report also details the responses used from surveys to generate the TSM score.

There are twelve survey questions, an example being:

Area: TP04: Satisfaction that the home is well maintained

Question: How satisfied or dissatisfied are you that [your landlord] provides a home that is well maintained?’

Response options:

  • Very satisfied
  • Fairly satisfied
  • Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied
  • Fairly dissatisfied
  • Very dissatisfied

Who must comply with the TSM requirements?

The tenant satisfaction measures will cover rented social housing in England if the landlord is registered with a ‘registered provider.’ Also, some of the TSMs will cover shared ownership homes.

Different requirements impact landlords with more than or less than 1000 homes. For example, landlords with over 1000 must submit TSM results to the regulator annually. In contrast, those with under 1000 homes must carry out and publish results from tenant perception surveys every two years.

The full list of registered providers can be found here.

Timeline of TSM data publication

  • 1 April 2023: New TSM requirements come into force, and landlords must begin to collect data for tenant satisfaction measures.
  • Summer 2024: Landlords with 1,000 or more homes will send their first year of TSM data to the Regulator of Social Housing.
  • Autumn 2024: TSM data published. The publication of TSM data will continue to be published regularly.

How to meet the TSM requirements

The TSM guidelines define how surveys are designed and delivered to tenants. Tenant perception surveys are core to meeting the TSM requirements. The Regulator of Social Housing states this on collecting the tenant surveys:

Providers must ensure that they employ a suitable level of expertise to design and apply a survey methodology to generate tenant perception measures in a way that meets the requirements of this document.”

Designing and developing the tenant surveys requires time and resources to understand how to configure them to meet the requirements and how best to deliver surveys and interpret the results. Then, once you have gathered the tenant responses, you must prepare them for publication and submission to the regulator. Fortunately, Intratone has done all the hard work for you in the form of our latest offering, Intratone’s Interactive Digital Noticeboard.

Intratone’s Interactive Digital Noticeboard.

The Interactive Digital Noticeboard is specifically designed to allow accessible and interactive communication between landlords and housing association tenants. The noticeboard removes the need for paper notices, delivering easy-to-access and read-on-screen information accessible for all.

Intratone’s Interactive Digital Noticeboard provides a template approach to delivering tenant perception surveys from an accessible, vandalism-proof, wall-hung digital device. This device provides an easy way for housing managers to pose survey questions to tenants, who can then easily choose an on-screen answer.

Answers are recorded once tenants place their key fob on the built-in proximity reader. If tenants don’t have a building-specific key fob, they can still vote using scroll keys and a contactless or near-field (NFC) device such as a credit card, mobile phone, or another type of key fob. This provides a high assurance method to tell that a tenant is genuine, and the answers can then be used to generate the TSM.

Notably, privacy is preserved as all votes are anonymous.

The time is now for landlords to begin collecting TSM data. Click here for further details on how Intratone Interactive Digital Noticeboard can help your company meet the TSM requirements.


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