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Archive for the ‘Social Housing’ Category
Housing Minister Grant Shapps has revealed plans to tackle council and social tenants who sub-let their property for financial gain. Offenders will face up to two years in prison for the new criminal offence or a fine of up to £50k The government estimates that 160k tenants sub-let their council or housing association homes to other people at an annual cost of £5bn a year to the... Read more
A housing association has hailed the success of a scheme that rewards tenants for keeping their rent up to date. The scheme, introduced 18 months ago by Orbit Heart of England housing association has seen rent arrears fall by half a million pounds. At a time where landlords reporting that rental arrears are rocketing, to see an organisation buck that trend is impressive. Orbit Heart of... Read more
According to a study conducted by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), England is confronted with a ‘growing housing crisis’, as a shortfall of 750,000 homes is predicted by 2025. The research revealed the biggest shortfall of housing would be in London, the South East of England, the East, and Yorkshire and Humberside. However, while the pressing need for us to build more... Read more
The direct payment of Housing Benefit to landlords rather than tenants is back on the table, according to Welfare Minister, Lord Freud. In a speech to the National Housing Federation conference, he said that landlords will receive benefit payments directly as part of the new universal credit system. If their tenants fall into rent arrears, Lord Freud said that the main aim of this measure was to... Read more
In the race to be the toughest on law and order, in the aftermath of the riots and looting across the country earlier in the week, the Prime Minister and Communities Secretary have both said that convicted rioters should lose out on benefits and possibly even their social housing. The Prime Minister, David Cameron, said in the House of Commons yesterday: "To the law-abiding people who play by... Read more
It is another case of “is this really fair?” as a Labour Councillor worth over £1m, resided in a taxpayer subsidised council home. In a twist of irony the Councillor is also a buy-to-let landlord with a significant property portfolio. According to the Telegraph, Ayesha Chowdbury lived in a housing association property in the Beckton area of East London. There have been rumours that she... Read more
A leaked government memo from Eric Pickles' Communities department to the Prime Minister David Cameron, reveals that changes to Housing Benefit and LHA, and a proposed cap on all benefits, will result in 40k households in Britain becoming homeless. The leaked document also predicts that affordable house building will not meet forecasts. The memo notes that the savings from cuts to benefits will... Read more
One year into the coalition government, it's difficult to see what has changed to the advantage of private residential landlords. Many had high hopes after 13 years of Labour government, that the promised "bonfire of red tape" would be a boon for landlords. Instead, the significant changes to housing benefit and local housing allowance are the biggest development for landlords and those changes... Read more
The UK’s statistics for empty properties have been skewed by those waiting for renovation or are “pending demolition”. Empty Homes, a UK charity specialising in creating homes from empty property, applied for Freedom of Information requests. These revealed that there are 12,000 homes in the UK that are empty but not included in Local Authority statistics. These are the so-called... Read more
Barnet Homes have come up with a new way to encourage tenants to pay their rent on time. They organised a prize draw, where four tenants who had paid their rent on time had a chance to win £250. Judging by the initiative Barnet Homes have had problems with tenants falling into arrears. This measure adds a little incentive for tenants to be on top of their rent. The main piece of advice is: it... Read more
Grant Shapps has announced plans to allow social housing tenants to maintain their own rental properties. The aim is to reward tenants who keep their property in good condition by giving them the control over repairs. The Government claim that councils spend £1,000 maintaining each social housing property a year. Now they want to pass that responsibility over to the tenant. According to... Read more
Grant Shapps is looking to revolutionise the social housing market by removing the right to council houses for life and allowing landlords the flexibility to charge rent based on what the tenant ‘can afford’. This is all part of the new Affordable Rent programme. Landlords will be able to charge up to 80% of the market rate if they feel the tenant can afford it. The idea being there is no... Read more
The government has announced that landlords who reduce rents for tenants on benefits will be able to receive Local Housing Allowance paid directly to them. Currently, LHA is paid to tenants who are then expected to pass it on to their landlord: however, some landlords have stated that this does not happen and the system has led many to avoid tenants on benefits altogether. Local authorities... Read more
The government has announced new figures on the number of families waiting for social housing. 1.75 households are on the waiting list for council or housing association housing, which they say is up 72% over the last 13 years. Housing Minister Grant Shapps said: "Today's figures underline the clear and pressing need to change the way social housing operates in this country. It is... Read more
Sue @ Upad on December 1st, 2010 in Social Housing
The BBC is reporting that the government's proposed changes to Local Housing Allowance rates are to be delayed for current claimants until January 2012. The changes cap weekly payments at rates from £250 a week for a one-bedroom property, and limit them to the lowest third of local rents rather than the current average. Changes were due to be introduced for all tenants in April 2011, but -... Read more
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- David Lawrenson: Good piece Freeholds are more valuable to buy and sell (among people who did this sort of thing) if...
- David Lawrenson: James, Good piece but why do Shelter fail to mention the rather important fact that lenders’...
- John Gell: Non-paid utility bills need not concern a landlord and it is not lawful to hold deposit money against...
- Maggie: We once had to install 2 Miele washer/dryers in 3 years for tenants and the original one was a Miele –...
- Sharon Bilsby-Vint: I only ever install Miele Washing Machines in all my rented properties for peace of mind. (I even...