Rents to rise for Doncaster council house tenants for first time in five years

Council house tenants in Doncaster are set to be charged more in rent following the first rise in five years.

By George Torr, Local Democracy Reporter
Wednesday, 5th February 2020, 4:05 pm
Updated Monday, 10th February 2020, 5:08 pm

Doncaster Mayor Ros Jones has outlined plans to increase council house rents by 2.7 per cent after a freeze dating back to 2015.

The average monthly rent payment of £279 - or £69.75 a week - would rise to a total of £286.53 for tenants.

The council provides housing to over 20,000 residents through the housing stock within the Housing Revenue Account.

Council house rent is set to rise for the first time in five years. Picture: NDFP Houses MC 2

The majority of these properties are let at social rents which are currently the ‘lowest within South Yorkshire’ and housing bosses say they will continue to be the cheapest after this increase.

Council bosses said increasing rents was in line with the central government policy to ensure there is sufficient funding to continue to provide quality social housing ‘maintained to the Doncaster decency standard’ and compliant with health and safety standards.

Other proposals include a four year investment programme in council housing, which will see over £135 million invested in the council’s social housing stock. This will include maintenance, adaptations and the start of a 10 year new build programme.

It is estimated that 560 new homes will be built over 10 years with an overall budget of £100 million.

Julie Crook, director of corporate services at St Leger Homes, said: “The report sets out the Mayor’s proposals for the 2020/21 Housing Revenue Account (HRA) Budget, including a 2.7 per cent rental increase and some increases in other charges, such as district heating.

“Providing secure, good quality and affordable housing can help to reduce poverty and inequality locally.

“Raising sufficient resources to ensure all council homes are improved and maintained to the Doncaster decency standard, build new council housing stock and improve the energy efficiency of the existing stock will have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of tenants.”

Mayor Jones has also confirmed that council tax is set to rise by 3.99 per cent, as the local authority attempts to find nearly £18million in savings over the next three years.