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Tuesday, 30 November 2021

Central Bedfordshire Council proposes change to social housing tenancies


Central Bedfordshire Council has reviewed its Tenancy Strategy and has launched a consultation on changing the length of the housing tenancies it offers.

It said the key proposal is to end the use of five-year fixed term tenancies and offer secure tenancies often referred to as ‘lifetime’ tenancies.

Adding that this change would offer tenants “greater security and stability” rather than worrying that they may need to move every five years.

This is “particularly important” for families with young children attending school and those who work locally.

The proposal will also enable the council to reduce the administrative burden of reviewing all tenancies every five years freeing up officer time to better manage social housing stock and focus on other important issues such as anti-social behaviour and tenancy fraud.

Executive member for housing & assets, Cllr Eugene Ghent, said:

“Whilst previous thinking was that five-year tenancies provide more flexibility and enable the council to make the most of its housing stock, this has not been the case and it is also unhelpful to our tenants.

“We have listened to feedback from our tenants and are proposing changes to give them more security and stability. The reality is that people who are allocated social housing do not usually find that their situation will change within five years, so it creates unnecessary anxiety for our tenants having their tenancy reviewed and it also creates unnecessary work for the Council.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded all of us how important it is to have a safe and secure place to call home. I want everyone who moves into a council home here to feel settled and part of their local community so that they can start building happy memories, without worrying about having to possibly move.

“I’d encourage everyone to have their say on the proposals so we can take their views into account before drawing up the final version.”

The consultation will be open for feedback for 12 weeks and will end on 28 January 2022.

John Guinn
I am the editor of The Flitwick Chronicle. This is an independent, local news service based in Bedfordshire. The Chronicle provides local news that is investigative, inclusive and relevant to the residents of Flitwick.

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