Dundee City Council launches rent consultation

Dundee City Council launches rent consultation

Anne Rendall

Tenants renting a council house in Dundee could see an increase of around £1.19 a week if councillors back a consultation on the options.

Members of Dundee City Council’s neighbourhood services committee will be asked to approve discussions with tenants on annual increases ranging from 1.5% to 2% or between an average of £1.19 and £1.59 per week.

During a two-month consultation period, council tenants will be encouraged to express their views on three options, the third being 1.75% or an average increase of £1.39, before a report is prepared and considered in January.

Anne Rendall convener of the neighbourhood services committee, said: “The three options in the report offer tenants a well-balanced choice between services remaining at the same high standard that they enjoy now or giving the council additional resources to spend on energy efficiency and Covid recovery measures.

“For example, this year it has allowed us to help 764 tenants in financial difficulties who might otherwise have lost their homes with Hardship Payments, averaging almost £600 each.

“The rent increases that were supported during the consultations in previous years have also underpinned the installation of energy saving measures including external wall insulation at just over 5000 properties in just seven years.

“Consultation allows our tenants to get a good grasp on how the proposed increases were calculated, and the balance that has to be struck between delivering legal, decent services and giving people in social housing more with higher increases.

“Having that informed and intelligent dialogue with actively engaged tenants each year shows clearly how successful the consultation exercise is. Last year in particular we engaged with more than 2000 people through numerous events and other awareness raising activity.”

She added: “When the consultation asks for tenants to choose which increase they prefer they know why we are suggesting them, what they will get for their money and what wider benefits it will bring to the city.

“I would strongly encourage as many of our tenants as possible to take part and have their voices heard.”

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.

There will also be targeted use of relevant social media and detailed guidance for tenants to help them understand what their rent pays for.

The neighbourhood services committee meets on October 25.

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