South Lanarkshire Council announces £50m investment in housing
Investment of more than £50 million is to be made in housing across South Lanarkshire during 2022/23.
The headline figure includes close to £20m on new council housing, £10m on external fabric upgrading works, £4m on environmental improvements, more than £2m on energy efficiency works and more than £6m on central heating improvements.
The investment in external fabric upgrading works and environmental improvements are both more than double the amount invested over the course of this financial year.
Agreement on the investment was reached at a special meeting of the Housing and Technical Resources Committee, with the proposals now set to be decided at the Executive Committee and full council meetings taking place in February.
A rent increase of 2.2% was also agreed upon, which will come into effect from 1 April 2022.
This followed an extensive consultation process with tenants, and recent reports have noted that the council’s average rent is the lowest of any of the South Lanarkshire social landlords and the seventh-lowest among Scottish local authority landlords.
In accordance with tenants’ wishes and to reflect Covid-related uncertainty, the rent rise is only for one year (2022-23) rather than being set for more than one year as normally done.
Councillor Josh Wilson, chair of the Housing and Technical Resources Committee, said: “I believe that the housing budget for 2022/23 strongly confirms the council’s commitment to providing new, high-quality homes for residents while also ensuring our current homes are also maintained to high standards.”
Daniel Lowe, executive director of housing and technical resources, added: “Both the Budget Scrutiny Group and Tenant Participation and Co-ordination Group understood the council’s position with regards the rent increase and felt that 2.2% provided good value for tenants while allowing continued investment, particularly in the current economic climate.
“They also concluded that the proposed increase of 2.2% is fair and ensures that rents remain affordable for most tenants.”