Comment on: Tenants fail to pay the bedroom tax
Re. RSLs reducing their rents, this wouldn't fully mitigate the effects of the bedroom tax.
If you're deemed to have spare rooms you'll still have your H/B reduced by 14/25%
Granted, the reduction will be less. But how much would a RSL have to reduce its rents by before the 14/25% reduction became acceptable to the tenant?
For arguements sake... Say your rent is currently £100 a week, and you are deemed to have 2 spare bedrooms. You'll lose £25 per week due to the bedroom tax. Even if your landlord halved your rent, to £50 per week, you'd still lose £12.50 per week due to the bedroom tax.
I take the point that a £12.50 reduction is easier to live with than a £25 reduction. But for many people finding £12.50 extra a week will still be far too much; and the landlord is losing massive amounts of money which will in turn start to affect services.
I can understand the view that to do nothing suggests landlords are in cahoots with the government. But on the other hand, I think if landlords start reducing rents then they are sending out the message that they accept the bedroom tax.
The government knows this. They want landlords to absorb the cost (and yet still deliver on their new homes targets, of course!) But reduing rents won't solve the problem for tenants and will cripple RSLs financially.
Comment on: Heading into trouble
Middle Management - you've hit the nail on the head re. an alternative to a benefit cap. The alternative is a rent cap.
This would penalise the few (landlords) rather than the many (working people who claim benefit to subsidise the low wages of employers and high UK living costs.)
I agree with your point that no govenrment of any colour will take this step. They'd prefer to carry on penalising the many in order to benefit the few.
Comment on: Landlords take private rent plunge
A social landlord builds a property.
It lets it at a market rent to a person / people who can afford the market rent.
The cost to the landlord of managing / maintaining this market rent property is the same as a 'social' property. Ergo, the landlord is making more money from it; and probably more money than a private landlord due to the social landlord's economies of scale (maintenance etc.)
Social landlord therefore has more money available to invest in its 'social' stock, thus keeping social housing alive (because it'll fall to social landlords to keep ti alive - no government of any colour seems to be serious about it.)
I really can't see the problem here.
The only flaw would be if social landlords start giving a higher standard of service to 'market rent' tenants, because this would eat up the additional surplus social landlords will make from these properties. But
I don't see a reason for social landlords to do this: as it is, most offer a far better service and standard of housing to the majority of their tenants than letting agents / private landlords.
Comment on: Fed to the crocodiles
The Eastlands Homes magazine / newsletter at the centre of this story has an 'approved by residents' stamp on it.
Comment on: Fed to the crocodiles
I'm afraid I have to agree that Sheila Doran and Eastlands Homes still seem to be missing the point about why people reacted so negatively to the magazine article.
It's not what you were saying, it was the way you were saying it.
The vast majority - if not all - Housing Associations are contacting tenants or using tenant publications to offer support and budgeting advice. There are ways to do this without making assumptions / judgements based on inaccurate and negative stereotypes.
Of course, once you are having that one-to-one conversation with a resident and doing a breakdown of income / outgoings, you might want to question / challenge (in a constructive and supportive way) where money is being spent.
But ultimately, someone will only stick to a budgeting plan if they themselves see the value in giving up what might been seen as a 'luxury'.
And even then, what many people would consider 'luxuries' I would see as 'essentials' these days. I've heard people say that a TV licence; internet access; and a mobile phone are 'luxuries'. When in fact I would argue if you cut people off from the world by denying them access to a TV, the internet, and a phone they are far less likely to stick to a budgeting plan.
This is before you consider that denying people access to a TV / the internet restricts their access to information, and access to the best deals / prices which are often only available online.
Anon Ymous has not added any discussions yet.
Posted in: Uncharitable Charitable Housing Association
"I'm not blaming TVHA for the boom. All I'm saying is that the boom has, effectively, left me with a landlord who will never offer me any assistance, and a roof that I can't afford to fix."
Has the 'boom' really left you with a landlord that will never offer any assitance?
Surely, regardless of the 'boom', your landlord would not offer assistance? If there hadn't been a 'boom' your landlord still wouldn't repair your property.
It's not the boom at fault, it's not your landlord at fault: the problem in this case is the nature of shared ownership / PRPB deals.
This initiative was in response to a perceived need. But like so many other things in the housing sector, rather than deal with the underlying causes of the issue, we end up tinkering round the edges.
In this case the real underlying problems are surely badly negotiated contracts; poor performance monitoring; and a failure to hold contractors to account and activate penalty clauses for poor performance?
Also available in this series of Treating Symptoms And Not Causes: 'Housing Supply & Demand.'
Posted in: From mother to daughter - possible?
Suzan - check with your landlord. I think Fred might be getting confused with what you are suggesting and a mutual exchange or succession
Landlords have to have good reasons - one of the 'grounds' set out in the Housing Act - to refuse an exchange. There are also legal rights around succession.
However, there is no legal or automatic 'right' to assign your tenancy to your children in the way you are suggesting. Assignment of tenancy will be at the discretion of your landlord - and I would suggest you will need to have good reasons for them to do this.
Social landlords, quite rightly, do not tend to let tenants assign their tenancy to children - otherwise you could get proprties in the hands of a family for generations, regardless of the needs of those children. Also, a lot of landlords have tightened up on transfers and assignments for existing tenants now they are tied into CBL agreements.
As always, it's best to speak to your landlord to discuss your specific circumstances.
One question they might want to ask, for example, is... If you are planning to move away to Scotland to work and live, presumably your children are old enough and able enough to live on their own. This being the case, why can't they find their own accomodation? Is their need for your current home greater than other people on the local waiting list?
Posted in: ASB 2011
Jack, the colours were always there for all to see.
I've said this before and I'll say it again... This is not news. Local Offers were never going to be enforced by the TSA. From the TSA's regulatory framework, page 17:
"Q: What happens if there is a failure to deliver on the commitments made in an agreed local offer?
A: Only in exceptional cases (such as where the provider does not meet the TSA standards) will the TSA consider more formal intervention."
Posted in: IS Housing truly an incestious sector?
Another thing to consider is that as organisations make cuts they will often offer jobs internally to people who are 'at risk' of redundancy. So it may seem that organisations are being 'incestuous' but they are really trying to avoid putting people out of work. This will happen more and more as organisations try to achieve 'natural wastage.'
Another thing to bear in mind is some organisations have an active policy of developing thier own staff, so all jobs will be advertsied internally first. If they are advertised externally it's because they can't find someone from within the organisation.
None of this is unique to housing organisations.