Sheffield’s Council rebukes Government’s rent setting plans citing potential losses of £12 million
Sheffield City Council resisted government consultations on imposing a rent cap increase for 2023/24, arguing potential losses of £12 million would hugely impact their services to council housing tenants.
The government asked local authorities whether they agree with a ceiling of between three percent and seven percent being imposed on rent increases for the next two years.
Chair of the Housing Policy Committee said, by the government rules, every year council house rents increase by the rate of inflation and an additional one percent.
Councillor Douglas Johnson, Chair of Housing Policy Committee, said: “We are really up against it.
“We want to provide a good service to all tenants, build more council houses and insulate homes. However, the main source of income is council tenants’ rents so any changes to the rules on rent setting means less money for tenants’ services.”
The council disagreed with the government’s plans, as it believes that individual housing organisations should be left to determine the appropriate local rent levels.
There is now uncertainty over the outcome of the consultation as nothing will be finalised until the government provides an update.
Councillor Johnson said: “We are faced with difficult decisions ahead of us. If we don’t increase rents, we will have to cut services and we are looking at where it is possible to do this, but how can we say that’s something that’s easy to do?
“We have not had enough funding from the Government for many years and the result is that there is very little we can cut.”
Councillor Johnson said he wants to reassure residents that the council will support those who are affected by any increases in rent and are struggling to pay.