Paying your rent

The Government tells us how to work out your new rent, they are trying to make sure all social landlords in the same area charges similar rents (this includes Councils and Housing Associations).

Because the formula for the increase changes from year-to-year, we send you information on how it has been calculated with the letter telling you what your new rent will be in April every year. We always give you at least four weeks’ notice of the increase in rent.

Rent is the money you pay to the Council for your home and the other housing-related services you receive. It is a weekly charge 
that is due in advance every Monday. It is the tenant’s responsibility to pay it on time. If it is not paid, then arrears of rent are created. If you do not pay your rent in full every week, then your payments must be in advance.

Even if you are getting benefits, it is up to you to make sure your rent account stays up-to-date.  

We can refer you to the Council’s Money Advice Service for advice on benefits and help in managing any debts you may have, not just rent arrears.

Your rent is part of your legally binding tenancy agreement. If you keep a clear rent account you will be able to:

  • Transfer to another property if you are on the transfer list and have enough points
  • Swap homes with another council or housing association
  • Obtain a good reference from the District Council if you want to buy your home
  • Have your non-secure tenancy made secure, giving you more rights and security

We will:

  • Listen to and respond to all enquiries fairly and consistently
  • Send a rent statement to all current tenants every 13 weeks
  • Refund credits on rent accounts within 28-days of receiving a request in writing
  • Visit you at home if you ask us to
  • Provide information in different languages, Braille, large print and on audio tape if you require it 

Your rent is calculated on a 48-week year rather than a 52-week year and runs from April to March. If all your payments are up-to-date, there will be four weeks when you pay no rent. These are the two weeks over Christmas and New Year and the two weeks at the end of March.

In most council properties the tenant is responsible for paying their own heating bills. However, in a few of our sheltered housing schemes heating is provided from a central system and distributed to all flats. In this case the council will collect a communal heating charge from the residents.

This is shown separately from rent charges and is calculated from the actual costs of heating. The council will provide evidence on how this has been calculated.

This charge is not usually covered by housing benefit.

North Kesteven District Council insures the building, but tenants are responsible for insuring personal belongings, decorations and furnishings.

The Council has arranged,via an independent broker,a scheme for tenants to insure their household contents at competitive rates. To find out more about the “Pay As You Go”  Home Contents Insurance Scheme, please call Customer Services on 01529 414155 or speak to your Housing Officer.

The Council does have a policy for paying compensation if the property is left without essential services, for example cooking or washing facilities. This will be explained fully before any work commences.

An inconvenience allowance of £50 is payable where a tenant has experienced one or more of the following for a minimum of eight hours: loss of cooking facilities; loss of hot water and personal washing facilities; loss of toilet facilities; loss of electricity or loss of heating (between 31 October and 1 May where there is no alternative such as gas/electric fire).

An application form can be obtained from the Capital Works Liaison Officer following completion of the improvement works.

Decoration Allowances are issued in the form of a voucher. The voucher can be taken to any of the participating suppliers and exchanged for approved decoration materials to the maximum value of the voucher. A Decoration Allowance will be only paid by cheque if the tenant is unable to carry out the redecoration themselves due to age or disability.