Highland rent increase contained to 3 percent (12/01/11)

Council house rents in the Highlands are set to be contained to 3% in 2011-12, 1.7% below the rate of inflation.

The Highland Council’s Housing and Social Work Committee recommended that the average council house rent should increase from £64.15 per week to £66.07 (over 48 weekly charges) – an average increase of £1.92 per week.

Had the Council followed a policy – introduced in 2001 – of applying annual rent increases of the Retail Price Index (RPI) plus 1%, the increase would have been 5.7% or an average increase of £3.66 per week.

But as a result of consultation with tenants and in recognition that Highland rents are amongst the highest in Scotland, the Committee agreed to peg the increase at 3%.

The committee has recommended that nearly £16 million should be spent in 2011/12 on day-to-day repairs and planned maintenance on the stock of 13,000 council houses.

It has also recommended that a minimum rent of £5 per week for garages and £2.50 per month for garage sites be introduced in 2011/12.  The council owns 1,859 garages and 920 garage sites.

The Council House Rent increase will be decided by The Highland Council at its meeting on Thursday 10 February.

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