Keeping You Warm and Secure in Retirement
We work hard to keep our residents warm and secure in the winter months and to find out more about how our teams manage this, we spoke to our Operations Director, David Hockaday.
Our ‘At Home’ with McCarthy Stone events are now in full swing, with residents, their friends and their family members all enjoying the best of the festive season. But, these great events aren’t the only way we look after our residents, we also work hard to ensure every single one of our keep all residents safe and warm– particularly in these long winter evenings.
We spoke to our Operations Director, David Hockaday, who told us more about how our services such as heating and security, work.
Interview with David Hockaday
Can you tell us about the heating options provided at McCarthy & Stone’s developments?
We place a big focus on allowing all of our residents to maintain their independence. As part of this, each of our apartments comes with individually controlled electric heaters, so our residents can choose the heating they’d like in their own home.
We also have plenty of heaters in the communal areas, so our residents are never far from a nice warm radiator. If any of our residents ever want the heating up, our friendly staff members will also be more than happy to help them.
Could you tell us about how heating costs and the utilities industry has changed in recent years?
In recent years, we’ve seen the value of sterling fall against the US dollar, which has pushed up raw commodity costs. Plus, we’ve also seen the UK Government place additional taxes on the cost of electricity.
We do as much as we can to help keep heating and utilities costs as low as we possible for our residents. To help with this, we’ve pooled the electricity costs for each development into a single contract to gain economy of scale.
By pooling the contracts, we were able to negotiate better energy prices and make sure all residents were as unaffected as possible by any national increases.
This year we tendered £8.5 million worth of electrical energy for communal areas, saving our residents between 1.39% and 3.4%. How is this different to other retirement housing companies?
Could you tell us about the security facilities/options available for residents?
We understand the concerns of our residents’ families when their loved ones move into a retirement development, so providing piece of mind at this sometimes-emotional time is very important to us.
Each apartment comes with a secure front door that meets the latest safety standards. Plus, access to the main entrance is controlled and our ground floor apartments also have a perimeter alarm and door-camera entry system to the main outside entrance.
In case something goes wrong out of hours, selected developments also come with a ‘24-hour Emergency Call System’, meaning help is always available for residents at any time, should they need it.
How does the 24-hour Emergency Call system work?
Residents and their family members regularly make comments on how safe they feel thanks to our 24-hour Emergency Call System. It’s really easy to operate, too. There’s a speech module in each apartment that residents can use to contact a monitored call centre.
We also provide residents with pendants, so if there’s an emergency and they can’t reach the speech module, they can alert a member of staff or the call centre from wherever they are, using the pendant.
In what ways do the staff at developments support the residents in terms of security?
At our Retirement Living properties, a friendly House Manager is on hand during office hours.
At our Retirement Living PLUS developments, the Estate Manager fulfils a similar function and staff are always on the development 24/7. This means residents always have a friendly face to call on or someone to speak to if they have any questions about the development’s security features.
What effect does this have on residents?
We always ask for feedback from our residents and their loved ones because we’re always looking to improve our services. But, the feedback we get from our residents about the on-site staff is always brilliant and we’re regularly told our security features help residents feel safe.
We’re also the only UK developer of retirement properties of any size or type to have been awarded the full five-star rating for customer satisfaction by the Home Builders Federation every year since the awards began in 2005.
Visit Our Events or Developments to See for Yourself
If you’re interested in seeing the security and heating features at our developments, then why not stop by or visit one of our ‘At Home’ events?
You’ll be treated to a tour of the development and you’ll have a chance to see all the great safety features we’ve installed. You can also ask the staff any questions you may have. Find your local development and see what’s going on today.