Rent Review 2016
Rent Review 2016
By now, most of you would have received a letter in the post regarding our annual rent review.
We appreciate that some of you may have some questions, particularly regarding why your rent has increased or in some instances decreased for 2016.
We have put together a series of Frequently Asked Questions below, which will explain why your rent has gone up or in some instances down, and this comes into effect, and how you can access further support and advice.
When does the new rent payment come into effect?
The annual rent review takes effect from the first Monday in April. This year, the new charges apply from Monday 4th April 2016
How do you work out how much to put my rent up by?
Similar to other housing providers, the rent you pay us is determined by your tenancy agreement or lease agreement. The elements that make up the total weekly rent are detailed in the agreement and comprise in most cases of a net rent plus service charge.
From April 2016, in line with Government guidelines, we add 1% to the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) published in the previous September to calculate the rate of increase to your net rent amount (CPI is an internationally recognised measure of consumer price inflation). The September CPI was -0.1%, therefore this year the net rent will increase by 0.9% starting from 4th April 2016.
The rate of change applied to your service charge, if applicable, may be different and this will be due to adjustments made to reflect increases or decreases in items classed as service charges. For more detail see: Service Charges Explained
Why have you decreased my rent?
In the 2015 Summer Budget the Chancellor announced that social housing rents would decrease by 1% a year for the next four years, starting in 2016/17. Therefore you will see that your rent has decreased from what you were paying last year. Supported and sheltered housing, shared ownership is exempt from this decrease.
Where is my rent spent?
The money we receive is spent on maintaining your property and providing good quality, affordable housing for people.
We also invest money in people and communities, and a significant amount of this is invested back into areas in which you live.
How can I monitor my rent payment?
We have a resident portal myhome.bchg.co.uk where you can sign up to access your rent account and make payments.
How can I pay my rent?
You can pay by Direct Debit or online. See: Pay Your Rent
Do I need to notify Housing Benefit?
If you are in receipt of full Housing Benefit you do not need to contact them of the change. BCHG will notify them of your new rent charge.
Is there any help for residents who are struggling financially?
We will continue to offer support and financial advice to all our residents, especially those having money difficulties. If you are struggling with your rent and other bills, please contact us as soon as possible – the earlier you speak to us, the more we can help.
We have an Income Team on hand to help residents. They can offer help and advice on how you can maximise income and the impacts of Universal Credit.
Please contact the Income Team on 0121 561 1969 option 3