Rents and service charges
It is a condition of your tenancy that your rent is paid at least a week in advance. This means that if you pay your rent weekly, you should be paying your rent during the week that it is due, or if you pay fortnightly or monthly, you should be paying the rent at the beginning of that period.
The income we receive from rent payments is our main source of income. It pays for repairs, maintenance, improvements and the management of your home. Some of it also goes towards interest charges on money we have borrowed.
How Rents are set
2016 - 2020
At the Summer Budget July 2015, the Government announced plans to reduce rents in the social housing sector by 1% for each of the next 4 years from April 2016, breaking the ten year rent settlement of CPI + 1%.
The rent cut applies to all tenancies that are currently subject to the Rent Standard;
• Social rented housing in general that is owned by registered providers of social housing (whether they are local authorities, housing associations, or for-profit providers)
• Affordable rented housing owned by registered providers.
It does not apply to those properties that are outside the Rent Standard, such as specialised supported housing, market rent, intermediate rent and shared ownership.
Just as actual rents are reduced by 1% annually, so the old ‘formula rent’ or ‘target rent’ will also be reduced.
If your tenancy started on or after 15th January 1989 but before July 2011, you will have an Assured Tenancy. We will review your rent on the first Monday in April each year, and you will be given 4 weeks’ notice in writing of the changes. If you pay a Service Charge in addition to rent the service charge is not subject to the 1% reduction and in some instances you may still see an overall increase.
If your tenancy started before 15th January 1989, you will have a secure tenancy (also known as a fair rent tenancy) and your rent is set by the Rent Service Agency every 2 years, who will determine a ‘fair rent’ for your home. The dates when your rent are reviewed vary depending on when the rent was first registered.
In line with the Governments objective to reduce all social rents by 1% we are still registering ‘Fair rents’ every 2 years, however are annually checking the rent you pay against the target rent after the 1% reduction has been applied, if your rent is higher than this it will be reduced by 1%. You will be notified in writing of any changes.
Assured Shorthold tenants
These tenancies are known a ‘key worker’ or ‘intermediate rents’ and are not subject to the rent reduction, your rent will be reviewed each April and you will be notified of the new rent and any service charges with 4 weeks’ notice.
Affordable (Fixed Term) Tenancies
Fixed Term Affordable tenancies are reviewed on the first Monday in April and are also subject to the rent reduction, the service charge if applicable is included with the overall rent and the 1% reduction applied, you will be notified of your new rent 4 weeks in advance of any changes.
Shared Ownership properties are not subject to a 1% reduction and the increase applied on the 1st April each year is governed by the terms within the lease, you will be notified 4 weeks in advance of any changes to your monthly rent.
Leaseholders who pay a ground rent and service charge will be given 4 weeks’ notice of any changes to the charges which are reviewed annually in April, service charges may go up or down each year dependant on what has been spent.
Appealing against your rent
You have the right to appeal against a rent increase if you feel it has been calculated incorrectly, in the first instance you should contact us and we will check it and explain how it has been calculated.
If you are still unhappy about how your rent has been calculated let us know and we will advise you of any further routes of appeal as this is dependent on the type of tenancy you have.
What about in the future?
It is not yet clear what the Government will implement after the rent reduction regime ends in 2020, we will keep this website up to date with any future changes.