29 March 2021
If you're a Portal or Drum customer, your landlord will be Yarlington from 1 April 2021.
In November 2020 we consulted with customers on merging three housing associations (Portal, Drum and Yarlington) in the Abri group to make it easier for you to understand who your landlord is and who Abri is.
We then contacted Portal and Drum customers earlier this year letting you know we’re going to merge in two phases. The first phase is for Portal and Drum to merge into Yarlington.
We asked you what you thought, and the majority of you were in favour of the proposal. Thank you to everyone that had their say. Anyone that had a question and left their contact details will have received a response. All feedback was shared with our Executive Team and Board to help make their decision.
This means that from 1 April 2021 Portal and Drum customers will now have Yarlington as their landlord
All Portal and Drum customers will recieve a letter explaining the change in landlord as well as answers to questions you may have.
You don’t need to do anything, your services will not change
Even though Portal and Drum customers will have a different landlord, you don’t need to do anything. Your services, tenancy agreement, who you contact and your legal rights are all exactly the same. We've included a list of questions below just in case.
If you're unsure about anything, get in touch. Use the live chat or messaging on the portal to speak to someone.
Questions you might have
Will my tenancy agreement change?
No, your tenancy agreement is still in place and we do not need you to sign a new one.
Will who I pay my rent and service charges to change?
No. You will still continue to pay us as you do right now.
What if I’m in arrears?
If your account is in arrears, you will still need to pay this. You should pay your arrears in the same way you would pay rent or service charges. If you’re struggling to make payments, please let us know, we’re here to help.
What if I claim benefits or Universal Credit?
You don’t need to do anything.
Will my rent or service charge change?
No, your rent and service charges will not be affected by the merger. Just like we do now, we will continue to review the charges every year in line with your current tenancy agreement.
Will my Right to Buy change?
If you have the Right to Buy, this will not be affected.
Will who I contact change?
No. Your landlord will become Yarlington but you will still contact us in exactly the same way.
What about court action?
If Portal or Drum have taken any court action against you, Yarlington will tell the court about the change in landlord. You will be told about this change and should continue to attend court when asked to and reply to any court orders about your case if a reply is needed.
Will my repairs, grounds maintenance or cleaning contractors change?
Your services will not change because of the merger. Just like we do now, as contracts come up for renewal we’ll look at what’s best for all our customers.
What about my data and privacy?
Yarlington trades under the name Abri. As your landlord, Yarlington will use your personal information to deliver services. You can find all the information you need about this in our privacy notice at www.abri.co.uk. If you’d like a copy of our privacy notice in the post, let us know and we’ll be happy to send you it.
Who is Yarlington?
Yarlington is one of several landlords in the Abri group. They have homes all across the south of England and are based in the same offices. Even though Abri is made up of several landlords, all of them share the same values and provide customers with exactly the same services.
Why are you merging landlords?
Abri is what you see on contact from us, but as I’m sure you’ll agree, the difference between our name Abri and the name of your landlord, is quite confusing. So, we want to make it simpler.
By merging the landlords together, the Abri Group will also become one of the largest housing associations in the South of England. This will help us save money which we will invest in:
- Building at least 10,000 new homes over the next ten years
- Investing £215 million in our existing homes
- Investing £15 million in community investment zones over five years
- Helping tackle homelessness
How does the merger work?
The merger will happen by something called a ‘transfers of engagement’. It means that one organisation transfers all of its assets into another. It’s an easy way of merging housing associations.
Can we be involved in how the new organisation operates?
Absolutely. We have launched the Voice of the Customer (VOC) which gives you a chance to share your views at any time and about anything, from how we introduce new services and improve what we already do, to getting involved in projects that make your communities safer and supported. Keep an eye out for chances to get involved. All the feedback we get is looked at, no matter how small.