Council house rent consultation20/10/15
COUNCIL house tenants in Dundee could have the lowest rent increase in more than four decades if councillors back a consultation on the options.
Members of the housing committee will be asked to approve discussions with tenants on annual increases of between one and two per cent, as well as moving to a payment period of 52 weeks from 48.
During the two month consultation period tenants will be asked to express their views on the option of average weekly rises of 69p, £1.04 or £1.39, a report will then be prepared and considered by the housing committee’s in January.
John Alexander convener of Dundee City Council’s housing committee said: “The options we are presenting to tenants give them the chance to make an informed choice between increases as each offers a different level of future investment in our housing stock.
“Despite these options including the lowest proposed increase since 1973 we are still able to raise the bar by looking to support tenants who are suffering because of welfare benefits changes and invest more money in building modern, fuel efficient council houses.
“For a third successive year some charges, such as the communal cleaning and lock-up rental charges are frozen.
“The popularity and engagement with the extensive consultation exercise and comprehensive information campaign we undertake each year continues to grow.
“Tenants know why we are proposing the three options and exactly what they and the city’s council housing stock are getting for their money.”
As in previous years the consultation will include a number of local community events, discussions with Registered Tenants Organisations and information on the council's website and in council offices.
While tenants will pay the same total amount of rent they will be asked to move to paying over 52 weeks instead of 48 in order to fall into line with the payment regime for Universal Credit, due to be introduced later this year.
Cllr Alexander added: “Because Universal Credit will be paid monthly instead of weekly as at present, for people receiving benefits it makes household budgeting easier and will lead to less people falling into rent arrears if we standardise the payments over 52 weeks.
The housing committee meets on Monday October 26.