RESIDENTS in Erskine claim they are being short-changed by Bridgewater Housing Association over their factoring bill.

It is understood the coronavirus pandemic has had an impact on the amount of maintenance and repair work taking place in the Park Mains, Bargarran and North Barr areas.

However, tenants say they have been charged their highest annual factoring and management bills yet.

One frustrated Park Mains resident, who asked not to be named, told The Gazette: “We are being charged, on average, £270 per year, plus a management fee of £31.

“We expected the bill to be smaller this year, due to the reduction in work done, but this is the highest it has ever been.

“I have elderly neighbours who are in tears when this bill comes in, as they don’t know how they are going to pay it.”

The fed-up resident claimed that requests for a breakdown of the costs of these bills have been repeatedly declined by Bridgewater Housing Association.

“We have asked how much contracts have cost, as it appears to be phenomenal amounts of money these contractors are charging,” added the resident.

“However, things aren’t being maintained properly and repairs aren’t carried out to a satisfactory conclusion.

“There are overgrown bushes and, when the contractors come to cut the grass, they don’t tidy up afterwards and grass gets blown all over doors and windows.”

It is understood discussions have been taking place amongst some tenants with a view to forming a new group to deal with maintenance issues.

However, Ian McLean, chief executive of Bridgewater Housing Association, said a high proportion of complaints received from Erskine tenants about the poor condition of landscaped areas, public roads and footpaths actually concern land owned and maintained by Renfrewshire Council.

He added: “We do not agree that Bridgewater has not been open and transparent in relation to the factoring charges that are made to owners who live within the estates it manages in Erskine.

“The extent of landscape maintenance work carried out is provided on the association’s website and residents are signposted to this in the information we provide them with when bills are issued.

“If we can do more than that, we would be happy to hear from people who have suggestions about how we can improve.”