Categories Apprenticeships, Buy-To-Let, Landlord

Section 21 – Scrapped: Implications & Thoughts

Section 21 eviction powers will be removed from landlords. Housing Secretary, Michael Gove, says this will “end the unfair situation where renters can be kicked out of their homes for no reason.”

All homes in the private rental sector will have to meet a minimum standard to be known as the Decent Homes Standard

‘Levelling Up’

The ‘Levelling Up’ White Paper continues to say: “We will consult on introducing a Landlords Register and will set out plans for a crack down on rogue landlords – making sure fines and bans stop repeat offenders leaving renters in terrible conditions.”

The Government says home ownership will be boosted via a new £1.5 billion Levelling Up Home Building Fund being launched. This is intended to provide loans to small and medium sized developers and support the Government’s wider regeneration agenda in areas considered a priority for levelling up. 

The government is also committing to build what it calls “more genuinely affordable social housing.” A new Social Housing Regulation Bill will be introduced following the Grenfell tragedy in 2017.

The ‘80/20 rule’ will be scrapped, with much of the £1.8 billion brownfield funding instead being diverted to transforming brownfield sites in the North and Midlands, with less emphasis on London and the South East.

The Bill as a whole is intended to: “shift government focus and resources to Britain’s forgotten communities throughout the 2020s.”

So, what does this mean for JGF Electrical ?

A heck of a lot !

  • We totally support the need for more affordable, decent, safe housing for the many in desperate need of security in their living space.
  • This includes both rental accommodation and Social Housing.
  • Already working closely with Landlords and Management Agencies in both disciplines, we have developed a service and advisory programme to help maintain properties to the highest standards and refurbish voids quickly and efficiently so the properties are safe and comfortable for the tenants that so desperately need them, and the owners can relax, knowing the work is cost-effectively completed with professional focus.
  • We provide ‘nose-to-tail’ Electrical installation, inspection, correction and compliance, from construction to conversion, upgrades to occupation, and ongoing advice and service management.

What’s more:

The Bill has 12 Missions covering a breadth of National development criteria. One in particular sits at the heart of our own mission withing JGF Electrical and reads:

“6. By 2030, the number of people successfully completing high-quality skills training will have significantly increased in every area of the UK. In England, this will lead to 200,000 more people successfully completing high-quality skills training annually, driven by 80,000 more people completing courses in the lowest skilled areas.”

We are hoping we can use this mindset to build on our existing Apprenticeship Programme and to help other local Trades and the colleges in Kent and beyond to present closer relations for Apprentices, businesses and Britain to benefit long term.

We can’t keep up with BAE Systems who recently announced plans to recruit almost 1,700 apprentices and graduates this year – a record number, but we can, are, and will continue to do our bit.

[See our recent article / blog – The Knowledge Gap – for more on our Apprenticeships agenda.]

Categories Apprenticeships

Electrical Apprenticeships – ‘The Knowledge Gap’

My own career as an Electrical Engineer was set at an early age, as the ‘About Us’ page and the recent ‘Every Business Tells a Story’ blog reveals.

As a youngster, I would have Sunday dinner with my grandparents, Gran was a great cook – amazing roasties! Then, Grandad and I would go down to the garage, which was his workshop. There, he would teach me how to make basic circuit boards. The flashing lights and technical applications became second nature to me, even from this young age.

My own professional career began with a 4-year apprenticeship with Building & Mechanical Services.

For those considering a career as an Electrician, who have not had the inspiration and family guidance as I have, the best way to learn is through an apprenticeship. Apprentices work – and earn – full-time for an electrical contractor, plus, take classroom training one day a week.

Three of the apprentices currently enjoying the start of their careers at JGF are Drew, Harry and Harvey. They are in their 3rd, 2nd and 1st years respectively, working 4 days, and in college 1 day a week.

The Knowledge Gap.

We refer to it as ‘The Knowledge Gap’ because what’s being taught at college seems out of date with the technical and social skills needed ‘on the job’.

It’s something we are trying to work on, feeling the need to work more closely with the college to bring 80’s and 90’s dated syllabuses closer to 21st Century goals. Employers (JGF) are genuinely passionate about creating and supporting Apprentice schemes, partly as payback for their own time served as apprentices, and partly to invest in tomorrow’s skilled workers today.

We have designed 2x Apprentice Training Bays, which the guys are building from scratch themselves. They’re designed to focus new skills such as Smart Home Technology, Energy Efficiency, Health & Safety, as well as the core technical requirements of Electrical Contracting.

We hope that college time will help develop some of these skills as well as some of the basics, such as Maths and Algebra.

Closing ‘the Gap’

Over the last couple of years and for the foreseeable future, their Tutors have been unable to visit the guys on site, or spend time with their Mentors to see what ‘on the job’ really means today.

There’s a lot to learn and develop through an apprenticeship. Some of the ‘hidden skills’ are different to what you might expect, for instance:

  • have good eyesight and can see colours clearly
  • have reasonable maths and algebra skills
  • can grasp, manipulate and assemble small objects
  • don’t mind heights and can work on a ladder or aerial lift
  • are comfortable enough in tight places such as attics or crawl spaces (‘in cupboards’ as Lee says he always is!)
  • can lift and move heavy objects, safely
  • have a mechanical aptitude
  • can work both independently and as part of a team
  • can learn to follow systems and procedures
  • have the social skills to interact with others on contract work

Getting Involved

As well as getting involved across a broad range of technical projects, our apprentices develop not just their electrical skills, but core values such as team working, service ethic and analytical thinking.

3 years down the road, Drew knows and shares the enormous values gained through his apprenticeship with JGF. Harry is already a skilled asset and eager to learn more and more. And as for Harvey – well, early days still my friend, but with the encouragement of your peers, mentors and your Father (when out of those cupboards), you will have a great career in this amazing world of Electrical Contracting.