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Why is it Important for Social Housing Providers to Maintain their Websites?

We water our plants, change the oil in our cars, or groom our dogs – all to ensure they stay at their very best. Your website, like these examples, also requires this kind of consistent maintenance. As a Housing Association, it’s all the more important to ensure that your website is current, performing well, and secure.


The benefits of consistent website maintenance for social housing providers

There are numerous benefits to maintaining your website, especially within the social housing sector. Your websites are central hubs of information that provide key functions that both you, and your tenants, need to be able to access. We’ve chosen a few benefits to highlight:



Security matters in a couple of different ways: running necessary updates to ensure that your website remains as secure as possible from hacking and performing regular backups so that, if something occurs, you’re able to restore your site from the backup.

Regular updates are important. Older software becomes easier to hack because the longer the software is available, the more time has been spent figuring out how to successfully hack it. Equally, the updates often include security patches that fix vulnerabilities in the software that have been identified. These vulnerabilities are ways in which the security of your website can be breached. Either of these makes it easy for hackers to gain access to your site.

Regular backups of your site are invaluable if your site is compromised, but it’s not just for this reason. Things happen – someone could accidentally delete something, incorrect code could be used, or a new feature is deployed that has unintended consequences. The list is long. Having a backup means that, quickly and simply, you can roll the site back to before there was a problem.


User experience

For a lot of people, the first encounter they will have with your organisation will be through your website. This is, of course, true for so many organisations in the modern world. However, your organisation deals with something so intensely pivotal to people’s lives: their homes.

This means that there needs to be a high level of trust built up between you and the (potential) tenant. If your website doesn’t operate in a way that fosters this trust, you risk losing a potential tenant.


Self-management of issues

Your website likely provides tenants with a way to self-manage issues (at least to some extent) without direct intervention from your organisation’s staff. Whether it be reporting repairs, paying rent, or searching for answers to their questions, your site enables tenants to be self-sufficient and minimise the workload for the staff. Given the limited budgets and intense workloads you’re all facing, having a consistently available site is essential to managing internal resources.


Boost tenant satisfaction

Your tenants will come from a variety of backgrounds and can be facing many challenges. For some, even small changes can become stressful if they’re unexpected. As such, a frequently updated, consistently maintained, and easily accessible website is going to be especially important. Where this is offered, the tenants will feel happier and confident that they can rely on your site to do what they need. Overall, this leads to a greater sense of tenant satisfaction.


What can go wrong if a website isn’t maintained

This is an example of what can go wrong from a recent experience where a UK client hadn’t been maintaining their website.

One day, we were asked to add something to their site and found something that didn’t bode well: images of people holding their US credit cards. The site was being used by someone else as a scam. This is a huge issue! Finding rogue code that has been embedded through hacking is like finding a needle in a haystack.

Normally, it is quicker and easier to take down the hacked website and restore it from a backup. We couldn’t do that in this instance as they didn’t have a recent backup (because the site wasn’t being maintained).

Luckily, we’d kept an old version from when the site was originally built so we could put up this old backed-up version. The only other option would have been to start completely from scratch. Even with restoring an old version,  we still had to add all of the additional blogs and functionality that had been subsequently added. All-in-all, it was a very costly exercise.

They now have their site maintained on a monthly basis!

If you’ve had a website built by us but aren’t having the site maintained, or you have a website being maintained elsewhere but aren’t 100% happy with the service, we’d be happy to talk to you. Get in touch to discuss how we can help.

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