Title: Residential Caretaker Dates Employed: Dec 2005 – Oct 2014
Estates Location: Whetstone, London, N20
Barnet Homes was a large division of Barnet council to be transferred into an Arms Length Management Organisation (ALMO). It was understood that there were important works needed to be done on the housing stock and to get any grants from the government, an ALMO was needed. With several estates to be regenerated, the remaining stock needed to be upgraded and repaired.
Barnet Homes biggest project at the time was the changing of windows from either metal or wood frames into double glazing and installation within the walls. As a caretaker, it was important for me to know this information for the leaseholders and residents to understand where they stand in regards to charges and if they are affected. As there were some residents with deeds of variations, I had to use my knowledge gained to supply the correct information.
Involvement with contractors had to be a high level to make sure that information was given about any possible problems and the rules into asbestos, safety matters and lighting. An example of this should be signs clearly being shown about the scaffolding, the use of lifts, if rubble is to be placed outside, where and how and skip locations. The children and residents safety had to be on my mind to keep them from this unsafe areas.
The entrances and blocks would service would be the same as before with the extra workload in hand. The service had to remain the same to keep the cleanliness to a high standard. Checking for any repairs and reporting these as a priority.
- 24-hour emergency call out – Items such as leaks within the blocks, fire safety matters, electrical safety, suspected asbestos dumping, no lighting and gas safety
- Within three days – Areas such as door closure that is not slamming (unless fixable by myself), glass replacement (where the old glass is removed), leaks outside that are not considered dangerous to the public.
- Within Seven days – areas such as fencing breaking (that are not dangerous), blocked road drains (not considered to be a health and safety to residents), one light being broken (with supportive lighting),
- Surveyor required – Pathways that have cracks however not a tripping hazard, doors that might be on the way towards a future breakage.
With the additional workload with the decent homes program in place, I had to keep an eye on the flooring for wear and tear problems. Polishing would be suspended however, I was able to long-term plan to fit in any improvements when needed. Outside work would remain as it was, with bin areas being kept clean and the removal of any leaves, snow and ice.
To help keep the cost of the service down for all residents, I requested a jet washer from my manager to clean the recycling bins and the bins. I enjoy this task and found it to be a great success with keeping unwanted pest away.
Minor repairs were also a duty that I wanted to get involved with as a caretaker. Adjust door closures to close correctly, replacing light bulbs in the light fittings and other areas was performed. A form was needed to be filled out to claim this back to the estates under a caretaker service from the repairs department.
Reason for leaving: The residential service was coming towards an end and I had seen this a great opportunity to try something new. A career change is a reason for this change.
The items shown on the Barnet Council page was also used during Barnet Homes including these new items shown below.
We were given a backpack blower to use to help with the service at a better speed. This was very useful for me as my estates in Whetstone was fifteen minutes away from each another. There was also more powerful and easier to carry.
This was the type of jet washer that I used to clean the bins on my estates.
I had purchased this to use on my bike to help me get from a to b with the hako flipper on top. It was very useful and great tool. It also fitted all the brooms to help with sweeping if needed plus black bags.
To help with the window cleaning, we were given these to help remove any smears.
Chemicals used and experienced