From April (2020) your rent will be going up for the first time in four years and we would like to let you know why this is happening. Four years ago, the Government brought in legislation which changed the way housing associations charge rents. The Welfare Reform Act 2016 introduced a rent reduction of 1% each year for a period of four years. These reductions finish in April 2020 and the Government has provided us with a new way of calculating changes to rents.
The new rules provide a calculation for councils and housing associations to increase rents by Consumer Price Index (inflation) plus 1%. This means that all our rents will go up by 2.7% from April of this year in line with this formula. This will see the average rents increasing by around £2 - £3 per week - though this may be more, or less, depending on how much rent you currently pay. You will have received a letter advising you how much your new rent will be.
Our rents still represent good value for money with our average rents being between 30% and 60% cheaper then private landlord rents
Before the rent reduction came in, housing associations used to have a similar formula to change the amount of rent they charged. This has always been linked to inflation because costs of providing services may go up and down. During the past four years inflation has gone up while your rent has gone down and the amount of money the Trust pays for goods and services has increased.
We are also investing more in our properties over the next year and these costs need to be met. We are a profit for purpose organisation, and this means that all the money we make goes back into our communities.
If you are on Housing Benefit or Universal Credit this increase will be paid by your benefits unless you have had your benefits capped. If you receive Universal Credit you will need to tell your local Job Centre Plus that your rent has gone up. If you receive Housing Benefit and you live outside the Trafford Council area you will need to notify your local council (If you live in the Trafford area we will notify the council of the changes directly).
If you are experiencing financial difficulties or are struggling to pay your rent, please let us know. Our Customer Support Team can help you with debt problems, benefits advice and help with budgeting.
If you would like to know more or would like to speak to someone in confidence about any issues please call us on 0300 777 7777.
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