The 7% rent cap for social housing, which was announced by the UK government in 2019, came into effect last month. This policy essentially means that social housing landlords, including housing associations, will be limited to increasing rents by no more than 7%, plus the rate of inflation for five years.
The impact of this policy on housing associations will depend on a variety of factors, such as the current level of rents, the cost of maintaining and managing their properties, and the level of funding they receive from the government.
For some housing associations, the rent cap may mean a reduction in their income, which could potentially impact their ability to maintain and invest in their properties, and cover things like disrepairs. On the other hand, the policy may also provide some stability and certainty for tenants, who will be protected from excessive rent increases during this current cost of living crisis.
Fortunately, the UK government has committed to providing additional funding for social housing, which may help to offset any potential negative impacts of the rent cap. Overall, the 7% rent cap is intended to benefit social housing tenants by making housing more affordable, but it may also have some implications for the financial sustainability of housing associations.
The issue of damp and mould in housing is a serious concern, as it can have significant impacts on the health and wellbeing of tenants. The implementation of the 7% rent cap may have some implications for the damp and mould crisis in social housing.
On the one hand, housing associations may have limited resources to invest labour to tackle the issue, particularly if their income is reduced due to the rent cap. However, the policy may provide an incentive for housing associations to invest in preventative measures, such as better insulation and ventilation, to avoid costly repairs and maintenance in the future.
It is also worth noting that the government has recently announced a new £3.8 billion fund to tackle the issue of unsafe cladding and improve the safety of high-rise buildings. While this fund is not specifically targeted at damp and mould, it may help to address some of the underlying issues that contribute to poor conditions in social housing.
From a recruitment perspective, we’re seeing housing associations are starting to introduce building surveyors, specifically focused on damp and mould in housing, into their organisations. We’re noticing that a lot of housing associations are turning to consultancies to tackle their damp and mould issues, rather than bringing the role in-house. These consultancies are then coming to agencies like us and charging housing associations more.
Why not cut out the middleman and create a Damp and Mould Surveyor role internally?