Story 46 - Blog

Adriano's Story

Adriano is a Senior Building Surveyor at Look Ahead. He plays a vital role in preparing and maintaining our properties to provide high quality support services to our customers.

I joined Look Ahead back in December 2022, after around 12 years working as a chartered building surveyor. I had already worked in the social housing sector for quite a while, firstly for a local authority in west London, and later at a housing association.

I’m delighted to be part of an organisation that works the way Look Ahead does. It’s fantastic, everybody mucks in, even when it gets very busy, or challenging. I get involved in a variety of areas, from property purchases and reviews to health and safety. With support from the Learning & Development team I recently helped develop e-learning and training for customers and staff on damp and mould too.

I’ve also really enjoyed learning about the work and services Look Ahead offer and being able to feed into how we make them happen. We have plenty of specialist operations that support people with a variety of complex needs. The way a property is laid out and maintained is intrinsic to our service offer. It has a part to play in creating an environment that is comfortable, accessible and that gives customers a home that is the best place to support them to thrive.

Partnership is at the heart of how we do this, not only in terms of the brief we give external contractors who carry out the refurbishments, but also how we arrive at that brief in the first place.

Back when I first joined for example, I immediately started leading on a big new service project from a property development perspective. The future service is based in Ealing and has two sites – Oaklands and St Kilda – refurbished by lead contractor Chas Berger, and project managed by Faithorn Farrell Timms with grant funding from LandAid, SEGRO, and Property Race Day.

Once complete, the site is expected to deliver a specialist supported housing service for young people. It’s been a pleasure to work together with Look Ahead’s operational staff to develop the service. We have regular meetings where I present my plans about how I think we can make the property work best, and they feedback from a support provision perspective, which I then take into account.

It’s a large and complex project so I’ll work on it nearly every day and visit the sites every month to check in on how the works are progressing, and we have now held topping-out ceremonies with funders and contractors at both locations. The two events were a fantastic reminder about the value of the work we are doing and why. I am really looking forward to seeing the sites open in the not-too-distant future. It’s a big part of why I love my job, I have the privilege of helping to make someone’s home right for them, to make it somewhere they can live the kind of life we would all want to live.