Westminster Council has announced that, yet again, Council rents are set to rise above the inflation rate. For 2014/15 Council rents will go up by 4.52% (£5.28 per week) over twice the current inflation rate of 1.9%. Car parking charges on estates will go up by 2.5%.
At the same time leaseholder service charges are being reduced by 1%.
Councillor Guthrie McKie, Labour Spokesperson for Housing, said;
“Yet again the Council is piling on the agony on low income families. Each successive year has seen an above inflation increase in council rents. This time by more than double the rate of inflation. Even the Council papers admit that recent powers allow local authorities discretion in applying the national guidelines on rent increases. The Council is using that discretion to further punish families in Westminster. Labour’s alternative budget would keep rent and car parking charge increases to the rate of inflation.”
“In a blatant electioneering stunt the Conservatives have found a calculation on service charges that will see them reduce by 1%. What a bonus for the 3,000 buy-to-let landlords who own over 30% of former Council flats bought under the Right to Buy. It is clear that the Council is hell bent in ensuring that Westminster should not be a home for hard working low income families.”