River Clyde Homes limits proposed rent increase to 2 per cent
River Clyde Homes has underlined its commitment to affordable rents by proposing that the rent charge increases next year be restricted to the rate of inflation and is asking customers if they support the plans.
Back in 2014 a majority of customers who responded to a consultation agreed with proposals to restrict rent increases for three years to the level of inflation (or RPI - the Retail Price Index). Many housing associations use the October inflation figure as the basis of the annual rent setting and that figure has been announced as 2 per cent. With a 2 per cent increase, the association is planning, by being more efficient with its finances, to deliver the changes and improvements customers have said they want to see.
Consultation over charges for wardens, caretaking services and factoring will take place separately with the relevant customers.
Here’s an example of how a 2 per cent increase would affect a typical tenement property:
Stephen McCabe, chair of the River Clyde Homes audit and finance committee, said: “We promised to restrict increases to the rate of inflation because we know that many customers are still feeling the effects of the financial downturn. We have to balance that with their aspirations for the services we deliver and the improvements customers say they would like to see. Restricting rent increases to inflation (RPI) will still allow River Clyde Homes to improve services including: spending at least £5.5m on improving homes; almost £5m on increasing energy efficiency, continuing to invest in building new homes and spending £3.6m on the repairs service.”
He added: “We hope customers will let us know what they think of the proposals by completing the freepost card being sent with the Christmas edition of our customer magazine, dropping into one of our offices to complete a card or using the online questionnaire on our website. In addition our housing officers and customer contact centre will be asking customers to take a moment to complete the questionnaire.”
Each response will be entered into a prize draw with one customer having the chance of winning a £200 shopping voucher.
Customers wishing to participate in the consultation using the online questionnaire can do so here. The deadline for responses is Wednesday 4 January 2017.