ELHA celebrates 1,000th paper-free tenant

When Joanna Walker from Haddington decided to go paper-free, she became East Lothian Housing Association’s (ELHA) 1,000th paper-free tenant, receiving some flowers, chocolates and £100 in gift vouchers to mark the occasion.

ELHA celebrates 1,000th paper-free tenant

Joanna Walker

ELHA were the first housing association to introduce full paper-free services to tenants in 2008 (meaning all communication sent by ELHA is paper-free, not just selective bits), but it was only in 2015 when all tenancy services went digital through the launch of the association’s My Home services that paper-free really started to take off.

Back then, the association set a target of 80% of tenants going paper-free within five years, and Joanna’s milestone achievement means that figure is now 73%.

Martin Pollhammer, ELHA chief executive, said: “It was nice to be able to surprise Joanna as our 1,000th Paper-Free tenant and it’s a great point to get to, but our sights are now firmly set on our 80% target, and with almost all new tenants choosing to go paper-free from the start of their tenancy and more new homes on the way, we should achieve that target very soon. And as soon as we do, we will of course revise the target to 90%.”

“Paper-free obviously helps our business, but it’s great for communicating with our tenants too. Just before anyone had ever heard of coronavirus, we introduced new e-news services for our paper-free tenants. We know that over two-thirds of our paper-free tenants read our e-news within one hour of us sending it – so overall that means around half of our tenants read our news almost immediately we publish it.

“This has been invaluable in sharing information and communicating with our tenants during the pandemic – and we’ve even used this approach to start sending our paper-free tenants specially designed ‘thank you’ messages when they pay their rent each month. So it is much more than just saving a few stamps, it’s central to the way we deliver services”.

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