It is not an exaggeration to say that the past year has changed everything - how we live, work and interact with others have all shifted. The vast majority of people will have spent more time in their homes than ever before and being able to enjoy a sense of community has become more important than ever. 

For many years, Pinnacle Group has been managing Build to Rent (BtR) properties on behalf of institutional investors across the UK.  Pinnacle understands that residential developments are not simply a series of assets, but rather communities that need to be nurtured and require long-term stewardship to be successful.  A successful place is one where people choose to live and work long after construction is complete. Much has been written and said over the years about the importance of placemaking and rightly so. At Pinnacle we also recognise the importance of institutional-grade placekeeping.

BtR as a living sector is booming. Despite the COVID-19 disruption the UK property market has experienced, investment into the BtR asset class has seen record highs.  During 2020, almost £3.5bn was deployed into the sector and construction of BtR schemes in London has increased by 30% (Savills, 2020).

Where the pandemic saw the rental market shift significantly, with many traditional high street letting agents closing their doors during the first lockdown, Pinnacle found that demand for apartments remained strong throughout and, in response,  quickly developed and mobilised a virtual end-to-end letting service.

Undoubtedly the past 18-months has accelerated the requirement on people to embrace technological advances. But while technology plays a vital part of the infrastructure in building a first-class service, Pinnacle believes that it is the core management values and behaviours that shape how a community can thrive.

In over two decades in business, Pinnacle Group has learnt that while getting service delivery right is crucial, it is the relationship with the end user – the customer – that transforms a “fit for purpose” experience into something that enriches the quality of someone’s life. Pinnacle’s business philosophy rests on three guiding principles:

Firstly, is that one size fits all approaches do not work – each customer community requires its own bespoke service solution tailored to respond to local characteristics, issues and priorities.

Secondly, is that a community stewardship approach is critical.  This means seeing contractual responsibilities in the context of a bigger picture. In practical terms it’s about being actively engaged in addressing customers’ day to day concerns and priorities while understanding how those concerns fit into people’s lives. Working in this way, we make an important contribution to the creation of sustainable communities.

Finally, is that the lifeblood of any community is the people – customer satisfaction must be the priority outcome. Pinnacle delivers these three principles by being a values-based business that recognises that its workforce is its most important asset – management teams have autonomy within their communities and can determine how services are best delivered locally by engaging with stakeholders and responding to customer demands. This is achieved by employing likeminded, conscientious people who can problem solve and embrace Pinnacle’s community-facing, people-first values. Colleagues are often from the local community, including apprentices, further adding the local legacy of the development.

To build a strong community, communication is paramount.  Technological advances demand that customer communication is digitally enabled to respond to more flexible, time-constrained lifestyles and 24/7 expectations.  Across Pinnacle, an omni-channel approach is taken with no less than eight different communication methods including SMS, Email, Live Web Chat, Social Media and Chat Bots being utilised, while also ensuring that customers have the ability to speak to someone face to face, or call one of our customer service teams if they prefer.

Delivering a service which is technically enabled, personalised and exceeds expectations, transforms how customers feels about their service interaction and “journey”. By taking care of the customer as a person, not a service ticket or simply a tenant, we can guarantee a positive customer experience.Building safety compliance and looking after the bricks and mortar is an absolute given.  What sets Pinnacle apart is recognising the human component of our service. Successful BtR management is fundamentally about people and customer relationships.   It is focussed on remembering what makes a community, by connecting and bringing people together who are investing into an exciting BtR lifestyle. 

Ollie Miller, PRS Director, Pinnacle Group

This article was originally featured in the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry's Business Matters Magazine

Build to Rent: Creating Successful Communities Through Values-led Services

It is not an exaggeration to say that the past year has changed everything - how we live, work and interact with others have all shifted. The vast majority of people will have spent more time in their homes than ever before and being able to enjoy a sense of community has become more important than ever. 

For many years, Pinnacle Group has been managing Build to Rent (BtR) properties on behalf of institutional investors across the UK.  Pinnacle understands that residential developments are not simply a series of assets, but rather communities that need to be nurtured and require long-term stewardship to be successful.  A successful place is one where people choose to live and work long after construction is complete. Much has been written and said over the years about the importance of placemaking and rightly so. At Pinnacle we also recognise the importance of institutional-grade placekeeping.

BtR as a living sector is booming. Despite the COVID-19 disruption the UK property market has experienced, investment into the BtR asset class has seen record highs.  During 2020, almost £3.5bn was deployed into the sector and construction of BtR schemes in London has increased by 30% (Savills, 2020).

Where the pandemic saw the rental market shift significantly, with many traditional high street letting agents closing their doors during the first lockdown, Pinnacle found that demand for apartments remained strong throughout and, in response,  quickly developed and mobilised a virtual end-to-end letting service.

Undoubtedly the past 18-months has accelerated the requirement on people to embrace technological advances. But while technology plays a vital part of the infrastructure in building a first-class service, Pinnacle believes that it is the core management values and behaviours that shape how a community can thrive.



In over two decades in business, Pinnacle Group has learnt that while getting service delivery right is crucial, it is the relationship with the end user – the customer – that transforms a “fit for purpose” experience into something that enriches the quality of someone’s life.
Pinnacle’s business philosophy rests on three guiding principles:

Firstly, is that one size fits all approaches do not work – each customer community requires its own bespoke service solution tailored to respond to local characteristics, issues and priorities.

Secondly, is that a community stewardship approach is critical.  This means seeing contractual responsibilities in the context of a bigger picture. In practical terms it’s about being actively engaged in addressing customers’ day to day concerns and priorities while understanding how those concerns fit into people’s lives. Working in this way, we make an important contribution to the creation of sustainable communities.

Finally, is that the lifeblood of any community is the people – customer satisfaction must be the priority outcome.


Pinnacle delivers these three principles by being a values-based business that recognises that its workforce is its most important asset – management teams have autonomy within their communities and can determine how services are best delivered locally by engaging with stakeholders and responding to customer demands. This is achieved by employing likeminded, conscientious people who can problem solve and embrace Pinnacle’s community-facing, people-first values. Colleagues are often from the local community, including apprentices, further adding the local legacy of the development.

To build a strong community, communication is paramount.  Technological advances demand that customer communication is digitally enabled to respond to more flexible, time-constrained lifestyles and 24/7 expectations.  Across Pinnacle, an omni-channel approach is taken with no less than eight different communication methods including SMS, Email, Live Web Chat, Social Media and Chat Bots being utilised, while also ensuring that customers have the ability to speak to someone face to face, or call one of our customer service teams if they prefer.

Delivering a service which is technically enabled, personalised and exceeds expectations, transforms how customers feels about their service interaction and “journey”. By taking care of the customer as a person, not a service ticket or simply a tenant, we can guarantee a positive customer experience.Building safety compliance and looking after the bricks and mortar is an absolute given.  What sets Pinnacle apart is recognising the human component of our service. Successful BtR management is fundamentally about people and customer relationships.   It is focussed on remembering what makes a community, by connecting and bringing people together who are investing into an exciting BtR lifestyle. 

Ollie Miller, PRS Director, Pinnacle Group

This article was originally featured in the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry's Business Matters Magazine

Claire Kober joins British Property Federation’s new Affordable Housing Committee

The British Property Federation (BPF) has launched a new Affordable Housing Committee to provide leadership for the UK’s real estate industry. 

The committee, chaired by Rob Beiley, partner at Trowers & Hamlins, with vice-chair Simon Century, director – Build-to-rent & Affordable Homes, Legal & General, will champion investment in high-quality and sustainable affordable homes. 

It will lead the industry’s representations to government and act as interlocutor between the industry and key stakeholders including Homes England, the GLA and Regulator of Social Housing. 

Claire Kober, Managing Director, Homes, oversees Pinnacle Group’s housing and property management contracts and sits on Pinnacle’s Executive Committee. In addition to sitting on the BPF’s Affordable Housing Committee, Claire is also an Independent Director and Chair of House by Urban Splash. 

Other committee members include:  

  • Rob Beiley, Trowers & Hamlins (Chair) 
  • Simon Century, Legal & General (Vice-Chair) 
  • Catherin Webster, Quintain 
  • Charles Cleal, JLL 
  • Charles Crowe, PGIM Real Estate 
  • Chris Jeffs, M&G Real Estate 
  • Debi Marriott-Lavery, Places for People 
  • Julia Bevan, Grainger 
  • Kush Rawal, Metropolitan Thames Valley 
  • Matthew Chillingworth, Federated Hermes 
  • Natalia Kolotneva, LaSalle Investment Management 
  • Olivia Harris, Dolphin Living 
  • Peter Quinn, Watkin Jones 
  • Shamez Alibhai, Man GPM 
  • Thomas Mudd, CBRE 
  • Tom Paul, Optivo 

“I am delighted to join BPF’s Affordable Housing Committee and, working with colleagues from across the real estate industry, look forward to maximising opportunities for investment in affordable housing to support communities and social wellbeing.”

Claire Kober
Managing Director, Homes

Serving Communities through Financial Inclusion

At Pinnacle Group we now offer financial advice and support for residents to ensure they are accessing the benefits they are entitled and can manage any debt.

Pinnacle’s new Financial Inclusion Manager, Martin Keating, is working in the communities where we provide housing management services across the UK, to help households identify which benefits they are entitled to, as well as support applications and give debt advice.

Working closely with the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) and local authorities, Martin is supporting residents, especially those with low literacy or numeracy skills, to navigate the benefits system.

“I’ll look at the whole family situation and the financial issues holistically,” explains Martin. “I can help with any hurdles along the way and also make applications on behalf of the residents. I’m basically the first port of call and a one-stop shop.”

In addition, Martin supports residents who do not have internet access to find the financial support they need, which has become increasingly difficult as more services move online.

Since the start of the year, Martin has made a tremendous impact, supporting 192 residents, and has achieved financial outcomes for Pinnacle and its residents in excess of £134,000.

“I’m also able to help with any debt problems and can support residents manage their finances and repayments. In one particular case, I was able to support one resident with debt relief, and with the local Citizens Advice Bureau, managed to reduce her £25,000 debt to £5,000,” adds Martin.

Martin is also currently engaging with 33 residents across Pinnacle’s communities with employment training such as CV writing and interview techniques with external partners. This is just one of the initiatives that Martin would like to continue.

“I love working with residents and really making a difference,” explained Martin. “My work is fully supported by Pinnacle and now COVID restrictions are easing I’m collaborating with colleagues to help more people through town hall events and setting up drop-in surgeries.”

In the meantime, Martin is running internal training events with Pinnacle case officers on benefit programmes, disability benefits and universal credit.

“I want to ensure that case officers are identifying and referring residents to me who might not be claiming all the benefits they are entitled to or who might be in financial trouble,” said Martin.

“Residents can contact me directly at any time; there is no need to wait for a referral. I want to ensure that all Pinnacle residents are getting all the benefits they are entitled to.”

Martin Keating, Financial Inclusion Manager at Pinnacle Group, can be contacted on 07985 871635 and by email on Martin.Keating@pinnaclegroup.co.uk.

Claire Kober gets recognised as one of Property Week’s RESI Trailblazers

Claire Kober, a member of Pinnacle Group’s Executive Committee, has been recognised by Property Week as being a 2020 RESI Trailblazer.

Pinnacle's Managing Director, Homes, has been selected by a panel of esteemed RESI experts as one of 32 entrepreneurs, innovators and disruptors who are shaking up the UK residential sector.

Claire spearheads the company’s housing, estates and property management contracts, as well as Pinnacle People and Connect, our 24-7 contact centre. She works in partnership with a range of clients in the local government, institutional investment and development sectors.

In addition to Claire’s work at Pinnacle, she is an independent Director and Chair of House - Urban Splash’s pioneering Joint Venture with Japan’s biggest house builder, Sekisui House. Its mission is to build beautiful modern homes in characterful new neighbourhoods using innovative design, Modern Methods of Construction and the latest technology.

Claire’s mantra is:

"People are at the heart of everything I do; excellent outcomes come from strong relationships with all sorts of people – sometimes the best partnerships are the most unexpected.”

Claire Kober
Managing Director, Homes, Pinnacle Group

Congratulations to Claire for this achievement. 

For further reading on Property Week's 'Class of 2020' Trailblazer's read here

Pinnacle to provide tenancy management and maintenance services to Arpeggio Properties’ Ocean House development in Barnet

Arpeggio Properties Limited has awarded Pinnacle Group a contract to provide tenancy property management and maintenance services at the Ocean House development in Barnet.

From early November, Pinnacle will provide management services, including; rent collection, repairs and maintenance, voids management, planned preventative maintenance and lifecycle maintenance to 34 bespoke supported living units. 

Care and support will be provided by Next Step Support Ltd who support adults with a diverse range of needs including mental health, learning disability and substance abuse.

“We are excited for the opening of Ocean House in Barnet, and for the beginning of our partnership with Pinnacle. We are pleased to be able to support people in need, especially during the current climate. We look forward to working in partnership with Pinnacle.”
Robert Binns
Director, Arpeggio Properties
“It is fantastic to be awarded this contract. We are excited to begin work with Arpeggio Properties and Next Step Support Ltd as we support adults in need of help.”
Nimisha Patel
Housing Director, Pinnacle Group

The contract is for an initial five-year period.

London Tenant Management Organisation appoints Pinnacle as housing management and maintenance partner

Pinnacle Group has been re-appointed by CTR Triangle TMO to provide housing management and maintenance services to 291 council-owned properties in Canning Town. The appointment follows a competitive tender process and continues Pinnacle’s provision of services to the TMO, which began in 2010.

Pinnacle’s team will provide tenancy management, rent arrears recovery, responsive day to day repairs as well as ongoing resident engagement and social events. The team will continue to run the contract from the existing offices, while our 24/7 Contact Centre will provide residents with out of hours support.

The CTR Triangle TMO was set up by residents of the estate in 1996. The TMO is directed by a team of volunteer board members who live in the community and collectively take on the responsibility for the management of the estate, including the appointment of contractors. The TMO incorporates properties on Avondale Court, Cliff Walk, Radley Terrace and Trinity Gardens in Canning Town, Newham.

This new 10-year partnership responds to tenant priorities and will focus on high quality, comprehensive services which focus on upholding high standards and adopting best-in-class cleaning and management practises.

Nimisha Patel, Group Head of Housing, said of the appointment:

“CTR Triangle TMO are a long-term client and we are delighted to renew our close partnership to continue delivering first-class services. We are committed to working closely with the board and wider community to ensure the services we provide respond to the individual needs and priorites of the TMO’ residents. This is one of a number of recent appointments for resident-managed housing contracts, demonstrating our capacity to work closely with members of the community to provide a high-quality, personal and responsive service.”

Nimisha Patel
Group Head of Housing

Virtual viewings make affordable new homes a reality for Greenwich residents

A partnership between Meridian Home Start and Pinnacle Group saw the first residents move into Woodpecker Gardens a new development in south east London.  Meridian Home Start, a Community Benefit Society set up by the Royal Borough of Greenwich to develop affordable homes for rent, took handover of the site on 1 June 2020, with Pinnacle providing lettings and management services to 32 affordable homes. 

Reflecting current COVID-19 restrictions, Pinnacle’s letting
team have worked to offer virtual showings of the properties and engaged
remotely with applicants to let the units in Charlton, London. 

The Meridian Home Start development, which includes four
adapted houses, provides affordable housing to local families at discounted
rates, on average 65% of the market rent.

Each house has its own front courtyard and terrace areas.
There are also 12 onsite parking spaces with four accessible spaces for the
adapted properties. 

Cabinet Member for Housing Cllr Anthony Okereke said: "We're proud that Meridian Home Start, which was set up by the Council to access previously unavailable funding streams, has delivered another high-quality and affordable housing scheme for local working families. Tackling the housing crisis is a top priority for the Council, and we are delivering on that commitment through both Meridian Home Start schemes and our Greenwich Builds programme, which will see 750 new council homes created across the borough."

Richard Reynolds, Chair of Meridian Home Start, added:The team at Meridian Home Start are delighted to be handing over at Woodpecker Gardens, our second low rise housing development in Partnership with the Royal Borough of Greenwich. This is a very real milestone in our 600 unit development programme with a further two schemes already on site at Farmbank SE9 and Duke Court SE8 with more to follow, one in Woolwich and one adjacent to Falconwood Station.”

As the Royal Borough of Greenwich’s Local Housing Company,
our sole task is to provide a continuous supply of much needed well designed
good quality affordable rented homes for local residents in housing need in the
Royal Borough of Greenwich for many years to come.

Sophie Moore, Head of Operations, PRS at Pinnacle Group, said of the handover:We have been extremely proud to assist with the move-in process and allocation of affordable homes to applicants. In such challenging times we have seen impressive amounts of patience and resilience from all applicants who have progressed their applications remotely with our team. We have been able to offer virtual viewings and have successfully moved-in tenants in a phased manner to put the tenants at ease and minimise risk to those moving in and our staff.

The site handover was straightforward, and the finished site is beautifully presented. We look forward to continuing to welcome people to Sandpit Place throughout the course of the month and will ensure we are on hand throughout the process.”

We are delighted to be working in close partnership with Meridian Homes Start to deliver services across the Royal Borough of Greenwich. We are excited for the opportunity to deliver first-class services to an increasing number of families as Meridian’s provision of affordable homes in the Borough grows in the coming years.”

Oliver Miller, Group Head of Build to Rent, PRS at Pinnacle Group

Pinnacle provides a range of tenancy management and
maintenance services to Merdian Home Start, which includes; tenancy engagement,
income management, lettings services, cleaning and grounds maintenance,
responsive repairs, void works and planned maintenance. 

Crucial Care for the Community

Pinnacle Group delivers services in West Kensington and Gibbs Green. Four years ago, we saw an opportunity to add real value to the vulnerable members of the community by providing a Community Champions programme.

The initiative is led by Sara Benjamin, Community Champion Project Manager, delivering vital services to those in need – making a real difference to people’s health and wellbeing in the area. These services include a foodbank, yoga sessions, fun days, trips, clubs and training in mental health and first aid.

The Community Champions know that people need their services now more than ever during the Coronavirus pandemic. They have gone out of their way to post a leaflet through the door of all residents on the West Kensington estate, asking for anyone who needs help or support to get in touch.

They are also continuing to run their weekly foodbank, which many people rely on for vital food supplies. Donations are still coming through every Monday from the well-established food charity City Harvest London and once it arrives the team opens the doors at Gibbs Green Tenant Hall for anyone in need. Unlike some food banks, visitors do not require a referral to receive assistance and can simply turn up on the day.

Dependent upon the food donated, the team distribute groceries, with people taking a full carrier bags worth away with them and sometimes even more.

To safeguard the public during these challenging times the team has added extra precautionary measures for food collections, including restricting the number of people inside at any one time, as well as social distancing and the use of hand sanitisers upon entry.

Over recent weeks the use of the foodbank has increased and due to the nationwide lockdown measures the team is making sure that everyone who needs it can still access the service by additionally providing home deliveries.

"It’s important that we all support each other through these unprecedented times. I am so proud of the Pinnacle teams who are doing fantastic work to help protect the public and provide vital services and supplies. I can’t thank them enough for their efforts. Every day I hear of how our teams have gone above and beyond to help, as well as many other communities and companies alike. It is through this kindness and compassion we will get through. Please stay safe everyone.”

Claire Kober
Managing Director, Homes

Legal & General appoints Pinnacle as management partner for its Affordable Homes business

Pinnacle Group has been appointed by Legal & General as a management partner for its Affordable Homes business which has a delivery pipeline nationwide of 3,500 affordable homes. Pinnacle is the only private company – alongside 13 Housing Associations – to be appointed.

Following an extensive, two-stage tender process involving 140 companies, Pinnacle has been chosen by Legal & General to work across 97 designated areas in the North East, Midlands, South East and South West, in addition to every London borough, building upon its established nationwide delivery infrastructure.

The partnership will last for a minimum of 10 years and allow Pinnacle to focus on service delivery and resident experience, in line with Pinnacle’s Community Stewardship approach which prioritises long-term involvement in day-to-day community-facing services.

Legal
and General’s entrance into the affordable housing market is an exciting
proposition for everybody committed to increasing the supply of good quality,
affordable homes,” said Claire Kober, Managing Director, Homes at Pinnacle
Group. “Pinnacle is delighted to be working with Legal & General and proud
to have been selected as part of the network of affordable housing providers.
We believe we can make a considerable contribution to Legal & General’s
ambition to provide the highest quality customer experience.”

Legal and General’s entrance into the affordable housing market is an exciting proposition for everybody committed to increasing the supply of good quality, affordable homes

Claire Kober, Managing Director, Homes, Pinnacle Group

Ben Denton,
Managing Director, Legal & General Affordable Homes,
commented: “After a rigorous tender process, focusing on the quality and
customer service offering of 140 UK-wide housing associations, we have now
established an experienced panel of management partners. With residents already
moving into our first schemes, this represents another milestone as we continue
to pioneer the Institutional Registered Provider model. There is an urgent need
to keep innovating in this sector and to provide quality, stable homes for the
1.1 million households on waiting lists in England.”

Pinnacle begin comprehensive management contract in Greenwich

Pinnacle Group today announces that it has secured a
contract to deliver management services to Meridian Home Start, a Community
benefit Society providing affordable housing in the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Pinnacle will provide tenancy management and maintenance services for tenants of Meridian Home Start including; tenancy engagement, income management, lettings services, cleaning and grounds maintenance, responsive repairs, void works and cyclical and planned maintenance. Pinnacle’s ability to deliver a comprehensive and integrated range services means tenants have a single point of contact, easier reporting of issues, and ultimately, a better tenant experience.

Delivery of Pinnacle’s management services began on
30th September for over 50 units, and will extend to a planned 250
by 2021 as additional new schemes are completed. All of the homes managed are affordable
homes for local families to rent at discounted rates, on average 65% of the
market rent.

Nimisha Patel, Group Head of Housing at Pinnacle
Group, said: “We are delighted to be working in close partnership with Meridian
Home Start to deliver services across the Royal Borough of Greenwich. We are
excited for the opportunity to deliver first-class services to an increasing
number of families as Meridian’s provision of affordable homes in the Borough grows
in the coming years.”

We are delighted to be working in close partnership with Meridian Home Start to deliver services across the Royal Borough of Greenwich. We are excited for the opportunity to deliver first-class services to an increasing number of families as Meridian’s provision of affordable homes in the Borough grows in the coming years

Nimisha Patel, Group Head of Housing

The contract will last for an initial 18 months.

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