Sovereign Housing Association reports strong performance

13 August 2019

Despite a challenging operating environment, Sovereign Housing Association has delivered on its commitment to build more quality, affordable homes and invest in existing properties and communities, while continuing to transform so it can offer a great customer service.

In the 58,000-home housing association’s annual report and financial accounts, published today, Sovereign achieved a £99m surplus (2017/18: £104m), on a £402m turnover (2017/18: £378m), while significantly increasing investment in existing properties as well as new homes.

To meet housing need across the south of England, Sovereign invested £238m (2017/18: £181m) in 1,543 new homes (2017/18: 1,208). Nine out of ten of these new homes were available for a sub-market rent, or to buy through shared ownership.

With a focus on quality, Sovereign spent £93m (2017/18: £69m) on maintaining or improving its existing homes, which included completing around 200k repairs, installing new kitchens and bathrooms as well as upgrading heating systems. Customer satisfaction for repairs was 92%.

Our in-house property services team also achieved a 14.5-day turnaround on relets, getting homes ready for new tenants as quickly as possible.

On landlord services, arrears also stood at just 2% - excluding those impacted by Universal Credit. Sovereign continues to offer a personalised and targeted service to support those moving to the new welfare system.

Mark Washer, Chief Executive, said: “The numbers tell the story of a very successful year for Sovereign, how we’re transforming and investing to provide quality, affordable homes, great places to live and excellent services.

“Despite a difficult operating environment, Sovereign has achieved a strong financial and operational performance – but we want to do more, building on these foundations and maximising the capacity of our talented people.”

Two years on from the merger between Sovereign and Spectrum Housing Group, the organisation has completed its integration work. Looking ahead in its new five-year plan, Sovereign is focused on creating the strong platform it needs to maximise its social impact for the next 30 years.

As well as implementing the right technology platforms to help improve customer services, the plans include a greater emphasis on long-term place-making. Sovereign is trebling investment in community initiatives, including education and employment support, while taking greater control over design, quality and sustainably through a more land-led development programme.

“Looking forward, we have set ourselves an ambitious and challenging new five-year strategy, which will help us provide more much-needed affordable new homes,” Mark continued.

“The future continues to be uncertain, for our business and our residents, so we're creating a business model that can stand the test of time. This means transforming our services and investing in the right technology platforms now that will enable us to succeed for the next thirty years.

“As part of achieving our core social purpose, we’re already stepping up to build nearly 2,000 new homes a year, across all tenures. Whether it’s a new or an existing home, we’ll continue to focus on quality and sustainability too, providing homes and places people want to live, today and tomorrow.”