Photo of Phoenix Community Housing properties at the Meadows Estate on Beckenham Hill Road
Michael Tisdell
Michael Tisdell
Friday 1st November 2019 - 11:15

Leaseholders, tenants and Phoenix achieve more together

Michael Tisdell is a leasehold Board Member. Here he explains why every resident - whether tenant or leaseholder - should get involved.

When I bought my home, I only had a basic sense of how Phoenix worked. I have come to understand much more about Phoenix’s resident-led model, and what that means for me as a resident.

As I found out more, I became more interested in being a part of it. I wanted to bring a leaseholder’s perspective.

I first became involved as part of a working party overseeing major works on the Meadows Estate. This wasn’t only an eye-opening experience for me but one that beneftted both Phoenix and those of us affected by building works.

It sounds obvious but no one knows and understands what is going on in any given set of properties better than those living there.

When I saw an email from Phoenix asking for a leaseholder to join the Board, I wondered whether I had the skills and experience to do such a role.

However, we need to resist that doubt. We have some brilliant residents who play key roles in shaping Phoenix, but we need to keep finding and nurturing talent to keep the resident-led model healthy for the decades to come.

It is perhaps easy to miss sometimes how unique Phoenix’s model of governance is. It puts great trust in the ability of our residents and our community to set the direction for the organisation as a whole, and so it requires active participation from tenants and leaseholders to sustain itself.

I have felt personally a great deal of support from Phoenix staff and other Board members, and empowered to bring my own perspective and concerns to the table.

As an organisation, Phoenix recognises it needs to work on improving leaseholder satisfaction. This means developing relationships and communicating so we can build trust and mutual understanding.

This is as true of leaseholders as it is of tenants.

There are so many ways for all residents to get involved and have our say in how Phoenix is run. Let’s make sure our priorities are Phoenix’s priorities and engage constructively on what can be improved.

By working together, we can make sure all our voices are heard.