Council house tenants face five per cent rent rise

Latest News from the Diss Express,, @diss_express on Twitter
Latest News from the Diss Express,, @diss_express on Twitter

Council house tenants in Mid Suffolk look set to face a five per cent rise in rents on average for the 2014/15 financial year.

Mid Suffolk District Council’s top Executive Committee of councillors approved the proposal at their meeting this month.

Some tenants would see bigger increases than others, so the council has set up its Transitional Discretionary Housing Support Fund.

It is understood that the scheme will incrementally phase in the rise over the year, rather than in one go, but the full details have yet to be finalised.

As previously reported in the Diss Express, the council said a rise at some level was necessary because the Government had withdrawn a rent increase formula which aimed to gradually put council rents at the same level as higher housing association rents.

It means Mid Suffolk faces a rental income shortfall.

It said increases will be invested in repairing and improving homes, running housing services, repaying housing debt and replacing homes sold through the Government’s Right to Buy scheme.

Keith Wykes, who is the chairman of the Mid Suffolk Tenants’ Forum, which represents council house tenants, admitted the rise was big.

However,he said it could be justified with money being ploughed back into council house services and house building.

The rent rise is still subject to the full council approving the proposal when it meets next Thursday.