City Council welcomes Government U-turn on ‘pay to stay’ rents plan

Council Houses

Nottingham City Council has welcomed the Government’s decision to backtrack on proposals that would have seen families on modest incomes pay more for their council homes.

Under the ‘pay to stay’ proposals, households with an annual income of more than £31,000 (for example, a family in which each parent earned £15,500) would have been classed as high income and made to pay higher rents close to market level.

The City Council owns 26,500 council houses which are managed by Nottingham City Homes. Both organisations have campaigned hard against the proposals arguing that the average full-time employee in Nottingham earns just over £22,000 a year, meaning a household with one full-time and one part-time employee would be classed as ‘high income’.

“We’re pleased that the Government has seen sense and won’t now be implementing pay to stay,” said Councillor Jane Urquhart, Nottingham City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning and Housing.

“Making households on modest incomes pay higher rents would only have led to more rent arrears, more evictions and families doing without basic living essentials. The cost of implementing such an ill-thought out scheme would also have made it even more difficult for councils like Nottingham already struggling with the impact of cuts to Government grant funding and ever increasing demands on services.“

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