Council house rent set to increase?

Aberdeenshire Councillors met last week to discuss the housing revenue account budget for 2013-2018 at a meeting of the full council.

The report given to councillors, from corporate services, housing and social work, told elected members that it was recommended they agree to increase council house rents by a fixed 4.5% for a period of three years, beginning April 1, 2013.

Currently, average weekly rents for council houses in Aberdeenshire, the report says, is £57.77. Under the new proposals, rents would increase, setting a new, average weekly rent of £60.37.

In November, 2011, IBP Consultants carried out a tenant satisfaction survey which showed that 77% of respondent tenants were either fairly or very satisfied that Aberdeenshire council rents provided value for money.

Ultimately, councillors agreed to increase council house rents and heard that the service had consulted tenants and received endorsement for rent levels from members of the Social Work and Housing Committee.

The increase by 4.5% will be fixed for three years and ensures that Aberdeenshire rents continue to be below the Scottish average.

Councillors also heard that around 300 additional new homes have been proposed to be built over the next six years.