Rent increase halted for council tenants

The annual rent increase for City of York Council tenants is to be halted for three months due to the coronavirus emergency.

At the start of each financial year, annual rent increases usually come into effect. We are unable to reverse the annual increase in the billing system at this late stage, but residents are being assured that this increase will be refunded.

Council tenants are asked to pay their rent as usual and, those eligible, will be repaid the extra rent for the first three months of this financial year from 1 April 2020. Tenants don’t need to take any further action because the refund will be credited direct to their rent account.

Tenants receiving Universal Credit and / or housing benefits are not affected by the increase as their rental costs are already met by the Government / the council.

Cllr Denise Craghill, Executive Member for Housing and Safer Neighbourhoods at City of York Council, said:

“While we can’t reverse the annual increase in the billing system at this stage in the financial year, we will ensure no individual has to cover this increase for the first three months of the year.

“Anyone worried about paying their rent as a result of changes in their circumstances due to the current emergency, should contact their housing management officer (HMO) and seek advice http://www.york.gov.uk/COVIDHousing

“For more detail on the financial help available to tenants affected by Coronavirus, please go to http://www.york.gov.uk/COVIDFinancialHelp .”

Cllr Nigel Ayre, Executive Member for Finance and Performance, added:

“We fully recognise that this is an incredibly difficult time for a lot of households and that is why deferring these rent increases will make a real difference to tenants on low incomes across York.

“Just like our commercial premises, it’s right that once again City of York Council sets an example to all landlords across York and does what it can to support residents.”

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