Concerned about the April 2020 rent increase? We're here to help.
Keep an eye on this page for the most up-to-date Rent 2020 FAQs. We will update based on the most common queries we receive. Want to submit a question to feature on this page? Use the pop up on the bottom right of this page.
Will the rent freeze if we all go into shut down?
There is no current plan for a rent freeze, if this changes we will update customers asap.
Why is the rent going up this year?
Rents can be increased in April 2020 under the new Rent Standard for Housing Associations. This is the first year since 2015 that rents can go up.
How much will the rent increase?
There is a specific formula that Housing Associations must apply to increase a rent. This year the increase will be 2.7%.
What about service charges?
Service charges cover the actual costs of providing communal lighting, communal cleaning, rubbish clearance, and grounds maintenance. Charges will vary each year in line with the costs incurred.
If you pay a service charge, included in this pack of information is a breakdown of the services and estimated costs for 2020/21.
What do I need to do?
If you pay your rent by Bank Standing Order, Allpay or through Universal Credit: You should take note of the new amount to pay each week and:
If you pay by Standing Order let your Bank know of the new costs
If you pay by Allpay using a rent card, pay the new costs from Monday 6 April 2020.
I am on Universal Credit
On Monday 6 April 2020 (not before and not later) you need to update your Universal Credit journal with a change of circumstances and input your new rent and service charge.
Colne’s Income Management Team will check the new rent amount and approve it for you. We do this when we receive an email from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) that you have updated your journal.
What if I claim my housing costs through the Council and Housing Benefit?
Colne will let the Housing Benefit teams at each Local Authority know of the new rent and service charges
What if I pay by Direct Debit?
Colne will adjust your Direct Debit to take account of the new rent and service charges.
You will receive confirmation from Allpay, with a letter of your amended direct debit.
What about water charges?
Colne recovers the costs of the water rates charged by Anglian Water as the invoice is sent to us as a whole scheme. We share the costs by the number of properties in each scheme.
Please note, not every scheme has water charges included as part of the rent charge.
What about personal charges for gas and electricity?
Colne divides the cost of gas and electricity by communal areas and personal use.
Personal costs of gas and electricity are borne by you and are not eligible for Housing Benefit or as a housing cost through Universal Credit.