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ARCH annual report


The ARCH annual report for 2015-16 is now available to view.


Download it here.

Report calls for new Government thinking on affordable rents 23/02/2018 Labelled as Rent

Although the Government have announced a return to rent increases capped at CPI plus 1% for 5 years from 2020 however formal consultation on the detail of the proposal has yet to be undertaken.


A new report and analysis by Capital Economics commissioned jointly by ARCH, the LGA and SHOUT will provide an evidential basis for our response to the formal consultation on the rent policy expected later this year.


The report entitled "Setting Social Rent -  Economic analysis of policy options for social rents after 2020" assesses whether the Government's policy of consumer price inflation plus one per cent policy is appropriate. The report:


  • Includes background to the issue by considering the role of social housing


  • Considers how Government rent policy affects different stakeholders.


  • Examines existing policies relevant to social rents.


  • Discusses the policy context of future changes to social rent policy.


  • Assesses whether the government's proposed consumer price inflation plus one per cent policy is appropriate.


  • Considers other factors which would affect the results of the analysis.


The report concludes that the Government announcement last autumn to allow councils and housing associations to start increasing rents by 1% above inflation after 2020 was 'broadly right.' However it goes on to say:


  • A joined up policy on rents and benefits needs to be drawn up. That is because the sustainability of real increases in social rents is dependent on corresponding increases in the overall benefits cap. 


  • Higher increases could be sustainable in some areas to provide more properties and larger welfare savings to Government, though at some cost to tenants not receiving housing benefit. 


  • The national one-size-fits-all formula is not appropriate. Differences in regional housing markets mean a single national policy cannot achieve an optimal impact on different stakeholders (government, social landlords and tenants) in all places.


  • Modest real terms increases in rents can help finance new development, but development of homes at genuinely affordable rent requires Government to remove artificial restrictions on the borrowing of council landlords and invest in new housing via housing associations on a much greater scale than now.


Download the full report here.

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