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Charing Cross Housing

Charing Cross using SmartLINK technology to ensure tenant safety

26 June 2020

Charing Cross Housing Association is using technology as a smarter way to check every tenant’s safety by utilising our revolutionary Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway.

Established in 1976, Charing Cross are a social housing provider with 516 properties located within the West End of Glasgow, Scotland with some of their tenement housing stock dating to pre 1919. Their mission is to invest in their communities to create a safe, attractive, and highly desirable place to live.

In taking an active approach to the management of its housing stock and tenant safety, Charing Cross have decided to fit an Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway, with the aim of improving efficiency through strategic asset management. Charing Cross have been looking at this technology over the course of the last two years, however similar products require tenants to have WiFi within their property and Charing Cross did not want to force tenants to acquire WiFi. With the Gateway utilising GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) technology, this was the perfect solution for Charing Cross, as tenants do not need to have WiFi for the Gateway to work.

Following several call outs over alarms sounding, engineers turning up and the consequent alarms no longer sounding resulting in hefty call out charges, Charing Cross decided to mitigate risk and monitor alarm systems in their properties. The Association collaborated with our Regional Specification Manager, Tony Boyle to provide a solution that was cost effective, met the requirements of Charing Cross, and ensured minimal disruption to their tenants. The installation of the Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway was recommended to provide real time data insight into the fire alarm system, reporting such events as alarm head removals, fire alerts and loss of power.

The Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway utilises the next generation of wireless technology to interface the SmartLINK Gateway with all Aico alarms, assuring easy installation and reliable connection. This allows full visibility of connected Radio Frequency systems via an online, cloud based SmartLINK portal system. By having this information in real time, it enables Charing Cross to manage the system that has been installed, knowing the installation has been completed without visiting the property, receiving activation alerts via email and text enabling a fast, and reactive approach, resulting in safer homes for their tenants.

Alasdair Weir, Maintenance Officer, who has worked for Charing Cross since 2002, commented “Charing Cross has been working with Aico over the past 5 years and we have built a really strong relationship. Recently we decided to trial fit an Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway in a property following a host of false call outs for Carbon Monoxide alarm activations. There had been several out of hour engineer callouts with no fault found.  After discussing the case with our Tony Boyle, our Regional Specification Manager at Aico, we decided to carry out a trial of the unit.  Since fitting the unit, this has proven as reliable as every other Aico unit the Association has fitted, giving real-time updates of the status of every alarm fitted in the household.  What the Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway  has thrown up is a tenant with financial difficulties and real fuel poverty (the activations that were being heard were actually power going out and back up batteries being used) the Association has been able to step in and signpost the tenant to relevant agencies to try and get them the help they need.”

Regional Specification Manager for Central Scotland, Tony Boyle said of the partnership “it’s been a breath of fresh air working with a housing association such as Charing Cross HA who are pro-actively seeking to not only look after their housing stock but look after the health and well-being of their tenants with the installation of our SmartLINK Gateway. Having delivered our award winning CPD training to all maintenance staff and contractors within the last year the association have come such a long way in ensuring their homes are safe and stock is compliant with the legislation coming through. They have been a pleasure to deal with.”

With the first Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway fitted and working effectively, Charing Cross are aiming to have their entire housing stock installed with Gateways within the next 5 years, making life easier for them and their tenants, improving efficiency, reducing costs and importantly being fully compliant with safety requirements.

For more information about the Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway and to register your interest, please visit www.aico.co.uk/EI1000G

Photo: Charing Cross Pre 1919 tenement housing stock, where the Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway has been fitted.