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Changes to rent charges

Changes to rent charges

We know times are tough at the moment. As the cost-of-living crisis continues, we’re here to help the people most in need of support. As a ‘not-for-profit’ organisation, we re-invest every penny we make into our business, so we can help more people just like you.

Changes to Rent Charges 2024/25

Important dates: 

  • Rent and service charge change letters will be sent to all customers starting from 26th February 2024.
  • For weekly rent and service charges, changes will be made from 1st April 2024.

Useful information: 

  • Full details of any changes in rent and service charges, and what you need to do next, are in your annual rent change letter.

What does your rent pay for?

The money we collect through our rent and service charges pays for all the services we provide. Using this money, we make sure your home and neighbourhood are kept safe and in good condition, so everyone can continue to live their best lives.

Any extra income we make allows us to continue making improvements and delivering what’s important. Over the next five years, we’re spending £25 million on improving our homes and neighbourhoods. On top of this, we’re building new affordable housing to provide more homes within the community.

We are also focusing on maintenance, including routine repairs, response to damp and mould issues, regular gas and electrical safety checks and any planned improvements to your home, such as a new boiler or energy efficiency work. We’re taking steps to review and improve our response times too. 

What do I need to do now?

You need to start paying your new rent charges from the date your rent goes up. This will be made clear in the letter we send. If you’ve lost this letter and need a new copy, contact our customer service team.

  • If you pay by direct debit, you don’t need to do anything. Your payments will automatically be changed, and you’ll get confirmation of this from AllPay Limited, in March 2024.
  • If you manage your payments online or by standing order, please change your payments to the new amount from the day of your increase.

If you get support with your rent via Housing Benefit or Universal Credit, please see our FAQs below for more information.

Paying bills

Frequently asked questions

  1. How are social housing rents set?

Rent will usually be increased by a maximum of Consumer Price Index (CPI) +1%. Social rents are not set by us, they are made by the Government using the Rent Standard 2024. Find out more using the link.

  1. What if I can’t afford the increase?

Our main concern is to help you keep your tenancy and not fall into rent arrears. We have a dedicated Income Management and Tenancy Sustainment Team trained to help you with your benefits and manage your money. Please use this service to get prepared for the rent increase. 
For further support, call us on 01282 686 300 or email:   

To find out if you can claim any additional income, complete our easy to follow Benefit Checker. 
You can also get free advice and support from your local Citizens Advice, or from StepChange if you’re struggling with debts. 

  1. What does a ‘Section 13 notice’ mean? 

When a tenancy agreement doesn’t have terms and conditions for rental changes, and your rent is going up, you’ll be sent a ‘Section 13 notice’ along with your letter.

This letter confirms your rent and your right of appeal to via an independent tribunal. If you wish to appeal, you must do so before to the rent increase on 1st April 2024. 

The Tribunal’s official name is First-Tier Tribunal or the Upper Tribunal. They are an independent body with legal powers to settle disputes, including rent. They are completely unconnected to the landlord, the resident, or any other public agency.

If you want to appeal, you must do so with the correct method, which is explained in the Section 13 notice. Sometimes people also get referred to the Tribunal. 

You can contact any Tribunal office in writing, by telephone, via e-mail, or you can visit their office (please check opening times). These offices are local. 

Visit the GOV.UK websiteto find full details of the office that covers your area. 

  1. Do I need to notify my local council or DWP about the rent change?

If you get Housing Benefit and it’s paid straight to us, we’ve already told your Local Authority about your new rent and charges, so you don’t need to do anything. 

If it’s paid directly to you, you’ll need to let your Local Authority know so they can sort it for you. 
If you get help for housing costs via Universal Credit, you must tell the DWP (Department of Work and Pensions) about your rent change, either on or after the date of your rent increase (i.e. 1st April 2024).

Please use the ‘confirm your housing costs’ form, which is a ‘to-do’ on your online journal from 1st April 2024. Please don’t change your rent charges until 1st April 2024 or after this date. 

  1. Why is my rent different from my neighbours?

We can’t talk about your neighbour’s rent with you. However, differences occur for many reasons, including your tenancy type or how long you have lived in your home. 

  1. What are service charges?

You pay both rent and service charges. Rent is used for the management and maintenance of your home. Service charges cover services beyond your home and garden, such as the upkeep of communal areas (for example, mowing shared lawns and maintaining footpaths).

Following your feedback from a recent survey, ground maintenance will now be delivered our new dedicated Clean & Green Team from spring 2024. We believe this change will give everyone a better service and improve the look of our neighbourhoods.

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