Social landlords introduce five-year fixed-term tenancies in Kent
Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Communities, Local Government
New group introduces five-year fixed-term tenancies in Kent
A group of social landlords in Kent has introduced five-year fixed-term secure tenancies for residents.
The Kent Housing Group (KHG) - which includes all local authorities and most housing associations - has used powers under the Localism Act 2011 to bring in the strategy to reflect what it believes are the needs of tenants and housing providers across the county.
KHG contends that five years is long enough for families to settle and gain a sense of belonging to their community. At the end of the five years, tenants will be assessed to make sure the property still meets their needs, with the presumption being that the lease will be renewed unless circumstances have changed significantly.
Tracey Kerly, Head of Customers, Homes and Property at Ashford Borough Council and vice-chair of the KHG, said: "Ensuring tenants have stability at home makes it easier for them to find a job, support children at school and establish support networks. That is why this strategy seeks to secure consistency in approach across Kent.
“Local authorities are required by the government to have a tenancy strategy in place by 15 January 2013. We feel that with all social housing providers working together and sharing their expertise we can anticipate the specific needs of our communities across the county and develop a proactive approach to tackling the challenges we face.”
Meanwhile Chris Knowles, Head of Housing Strategy and Enabling at Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council, commented: “We know that each district and borough has its own unique demands and challenges to overcome and that this over-aching strategy might well differ to take account of their specific housing needs, but we hope that for the sake of our customers there will be many similarities.”