To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will set out the formula that (a) RSLs and (b) local authorities will need to implement as a minimum to reach the target rents set under his rent restructuring policy for (i) 2003–04, (ii) 2004–05 and (iii) 2005–06.
Rent restructuring in the social sector aims to produce a fairer and more coherent pattern of rents, while keeping rents affordable and well below market levels. We want social rents to reflect the size, condition and location of properties, as well as the level of local earnings relative to the national average to take account of affordability.
These factors have been included in the following national rents formula, where weekly rent is equal to:
30 per cent. average rent for the sector (property value/national average property value for the sector)
The national rents formula is capped at a maximum level, varying according to the number of bedrooms. This will ensure rents do not rise to unreasonably high levels in high value areas.
Registered social landlords and local authorities are being encouraged to start moving their rents towards the rents formula over a 10 year period from April 2002, in 10 roughly equal steps, while keeping annual rent changes within limits of RPI + ½ per cent. ± #2 per week.