East Lothian Council

Council home modernisation programme receives budget boost

Published Tuesday 9th February 16

Benefits and arrears

Approved budget aims to increase affordable housing across county

More than £112m over the next five years is to be invested in East Lothian Council’s modernisation programme for council homes, and in an increase of new affordable housing across the county, it was announced today (Tuesday 9 February) as part of the Council’s budget.

Council house rents will rise by 5% allowing the Council to continue to deliver significant investment in its existing stock and new build Council housing without compromising key day to day services such as repairs and housing management.

Councillor Norman Hampshire, Cabinet Member for Housing, said:

“East Lothian Council aims to continue improving its housing stock and in the coming years there will be an increased focus on improving energy efficiency. This will help make tenants’ homes warmer and cheaper to heat which will also help reduce fuel poverty. We have still maintained an average rent level well below the national average, we are now under pressure to not only maintain our existing stock but to increase the number of properties available for rent. The Council is working alongside a number of partners, including housing developers, to deliver more affordable housing in East Lothian.

“The investment programme announced today will be part-funded by this year’s rent increase of 5% which will bring in an additional £0.96 million in 2016/17. The Council carried out a full consultation of tenants regarding proposed increase in rents with 79% of respondents stating they believed a proposed increase of 5% to be fair and 93% saying they consider the rent they pay is good value for money.”

The current average council rent is £54.38 per week. A 5% increase will amount to an average rent of £ £57.10 per week. According to latest information from COSLA the Scottish average local authority rent is £65.99.

 

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