24 February 2016

Council achieves rent collection success

Council rent collection rates in Brighton and Hove are currently a good deal better than comparable local authorities around the country.

New quarterly figures for Brighton & Hove City Council homes show that the non-collection rate here is only 1.38%. This figure is around 25% lower than other councils with a similar quantity and range of properties.

At the same time the number of tenants with longer-term rent arrears is below the national average, and the rate of evictions for rent arrears less than a tenth of the average figure for similar councils.

The average length of time council properties stay empty between tenancies is also a good deal shorter here than elsewhere. For properties that don’t need major works such as structural repairs done to them the average re-let time here is 16 days, as against 23 days in comparable authorities.

The chair of the council’s Housing and New Homes Committee, Councillor Anne Meadows, said: “We’re committed to delivering high-quality services to our tenants, so I think our housing team deserves praise for their excellent work in this area.

“In some cases rent arrears are caused by serious financial hardship triggered by illness, job loss or relationship breakdown.

“It’s about attention to detail and working constructively and sensitively with our tenants to help them get the support they need if they do find themselves in a difficult financial position.

“This is becoming increasingly important as the changes to welfare benefits begin to affect tenants.

“I’m also delighted that we’re 100% up to date with gas safety inspections and I’d like to thanks our tenants for their help with this.”