21
September
2014
|
00:00
Europe/London

Rent arrears improvements despite tough national challenges


Announcing the latest figures for rental arrears, Leeds City Council has been praised for the level of payments made, after rent collection reached over 97.7 per cent, up one per cent from the previous year.



The money owed to the council from tenants is being carefully checked to make sure the most effective arrangements are put in place to deal with arrears and to see how government changes to benefits are having an impact.



Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive board member with responsibility for neighbourhoods, planning and personnel, said:



“When we know there are 1,300 new arrears cases due to the introduction of what is commonly known as the bedroom tax, we know we need to help people to manage the changes properly and find ways to get their payments back on track. However, while we’re determined to make sure we collect rent that is due to us, we also understand that the changes made to benefit legislation have placed a significant burden on some of those in the city least able to pay.



“We’re not a soft touch, and will pursue arrears through the most effective and appropriate route for each case. But we’re committed to being fair, and we’ll also do our best to help people find ways to pay if they are struggling.”



Notes to Editors



The council’s Benefit Advisors can help people identify what benefits they can get to help with their rent payments and can be contacted at local housing offices or the One Stop Centre 0113 222 4404. More information about rent and money matters is available at:

http://www.leeds.gov.uk/residents/Pages/Advice-about-your-rent-and-money-matters.aspx



ENDS



For media enquiries, please contact:



Phil Morcom,


Leeds City Council press office (0113) 224 3602

Email: philip.morcom@leeds.gov.uk