Council rent increases capped at 1% for 2015-16

The increase in the average weekly rent charged by The Highland Council to its council house tenants is being contained to just 1%. The weekly rent on an average house will rise from £70.26 to £70.97, an increase of £0.71.

The national average for Council rent increases in 2014/15 was 3.77%.

A 1% increase will also be applied to hostel rents, gypsy/traveller site pitches, garage and garage site rentals, as well as caretaking and CCTV services.

Sheltered housing tenants are subject to a weekly charge for sheltered warden services. These will remain frozen for the fifth year running.

In 2014-15, the Council spent £15.577 million on repairs and maintenance and has invested £17.5 million in improvements to meet the Scottish Housing Quality Standard for existing houses and £23 million to build new Council houses.

Director of Community Services, William Gilfillan said: “In order to provide best value for tenants, we will continue to identify annual efficiency savings aimed at reducing unit management and maintenance costs without compromising service quality. The increase is lower than the Retail Prices Index (RPI) which was 1.6% in December.”

The Chair of Community Services Committee, Graham Mackenzie welcomed the announcement of the low increase saying: “Most welfare benefits for the coming year will increase by 1.2% and council rents increases must remain affordable. The 1% increase will be welcome news for council tenants.”

10 Feb 2015