CAERPHILLY council is exceeding its targets to bring its council houses up to Welsh Government standards by 2020.

The Welsh Housing Quality Standard (WHQS) assesses the social housing stock controlled by local authorities and registered social landlords across Wales.

Homes must be in a good state of repair, safe, adequately heated and fuel efficient, and contain up-to-date kitchens and bathrooms to meet the standard.

Caerphilly council was asked to complete 75 per cent of internal works and 40 per cent of external works across the county borough by the end of March 2018.

In March 2017, a Wales Audit Office review found that most homes were below WHQS due to “longstanding inefficient and ineffective” management by the council.

It also concluded that the council was unlikely to achieve the standard by 2020.

But the council has now reported external completions at 4,754 homes (44 per cent) and internal refurbishments at 8,218 homes (76 per cent).

More than a third of the council’s housing stock is now fully WHQS compliant, according to a report.

It adds: “When considering the significant improvement in performance over the last 12 months for completions, together with the advancements made in surveying which assists with forward planning, officers remain confident that the completion of the WHQS programme by 2020 is achievable.”

Caerphilly council leader Councillor Dave Pool has also written to the Welsh Government with regards to the authority’s “achievement and compliance” with WHQS commitments.

But the council must now work towards completing 94 per cent of internal works, and 80 per cent of external works, by March 2019.

The Wales Audit Office will be surveying around 400 tenants in the county borough, together with tenant groups, in the coming months to gain an insight into the council’s progress.

Councillors will receive the findings in September.