Social landlord rent arrears and successful lets increase in February
Analysis by the Scottish Housing Regulator has found that aggregate rent arrears for social landlords increased to 6.46% last month, the highest level since the Regulator started collecting monthly returns from social landlords in April 2020.
February’s dashboard report shows that there has also been a 40% increase in lets being made by social landlords, after the Regulator had reported that lets had fallen by more than a third in January, with 42% of lets in February to homeless households – the highest level since June 2020.
The monthly dashboard report is designed to help the Scottish Government and social landlords to understand the continuing impact of the coronavirus pandemic and to support the work of the Social Housing Resilience Group.
The analysis also revealed that 939 registered social landlord staff were on furlough at the end of January, representing an increase of 47 from the previous month and the highest number since July 2020.
Due to planned changes in its recording system, City of Edinburgh Council could not provide figures for the homelessness indicators in time for publication. Given this, the dashboard does not show figures for the change from the previous month for the homelessness indicators. Excluding Edinburgh, there were small drops in the number of people who applied to local authorities as homeless (this fell by 2%), and in the number of households in temporary accommodation (this fell by 0.4%).
Since April 2020, all social landlords have provided the Regulator with a monthly return of a small set of key measures that focus on the main areas of impact on landlords’ operations. On 5 March 2021, the Regulator wrote to all landlords to advise them that, after the next return which is due on April 9, the frequency of the returns will change from monthly to quarterly.