Bid to prevent rent increase fails
Councils’ eleventh-hour bids to prevent inflation-busting rent increases have failed, although there may be hope for next year, Inside Housing has learned.
The Local Government Association announced two weeks ago that it was planning meetings with ministers last week to persuade them to make a last-minute U-turn on the rent-setting formula they had imposed on councils.
The formula sparked furore across England because it was based on last September’s inflation high of 5 per cent, pushing up rents by an average of 6.2 per cent in a year when inflation is expected by many commentators to fall below zero.
But ministers have now told council leaders they will not shift on the rent formula this year.
A Communities and Local Government department spokesperson said it was looking again ‘at the guideline rent increases for 2010 to 2011’.
The LGA this week issued a statement calling for the government to ‘pause for thought’ over its resolve to push through the rent increases during the next few months.
Vice chair Sir Jeremy Beecham said that now was an ‘excellent’ time to help recession-hit tenants by reviewing the above-inflation rises.