Council’s housing payments innovation in South Kesteven will free up time to help the public

A new online system to help South Kesteven District Council tenants keep on top of their housing account balance is being launched – which will also encourage them to make payments online.

South Kesteven District Council. EMN-150722-113405001

This forms part of a bigger picture to improve the services the council gives to all the district’s residents, in communities such as Ancaster, Caythorpe and Billingborough, by enabling people to interact with the authority through online services at any time of the day.

Tenants who do not have access to online services can still contact the Customer Services Helpline.

Customer Services received 9,371 contacts last year asking for a housing balance update or to make a payment. But the online service is designed to reduce that and offer a range of options to pay.

Head Of Corporate Operations Paul Stokes said: “This small change in the way we encourage tenants to check their balance with links to payment options will reduce our call volumes to concentrate on our most vulnerable and in need tenants.

“We will be encouraging people to go online and where possible, we would prefer that people move their payments to direct debit as these are the most secure, and fastest, way to pay.”

There is now a page on the SKDC website that allows a housing account to be accessed and the balance displayed.

“People can see their housing balance for the account entered as well as what they owe overall, which would be the total balance for all accounts such as garage rental,” said Mr Stokes.

“The technical work behind the scenes was carried out by SKDC’s own IT department, which has had a busy year transforming the way council staff work during the pandemic and continues to introduce innovation to make residents’ contact with the council more straightforward.”

Tenants who have any concerns regarding what they owe should contact SKDC on 01476 406080 as soon as possible. The faster they do this, the sooner the council can help. SKDC can offer advice on welfare entitlement, debts, and budgeting.