Issue - meetings

Housing Revenue Account 30-Year Business Plan and Housing Investment Plan 2024/25

Meeting: 19/02/2024 - Cabinet (Item 8)

8 Housing Revenue Account 30-Year Business Plan and Housing Investment Plan 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 333 KB

To approve the following recommendations to Full Council for consideration at its meeting on 6 March 2024: approve the HRA Revenue Budget 2024/25 and Five Year Capital Programme; approve the inclusion of all Fairer Westminster investments, including the extension of the HRA Rent Support Fund by £1.050m for 2024/25; and approve a rent increase of 7.7% from 1st April 2024.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations to Full Council for consideration at its meeting on 6 March 2024:

·       Approve the HRA revenue budget for 2024/25

·       Note the HRA 5-year revenue budgets for 2024/25 to 2028/29and HRA 30-year revenue budgets for 2024/25 to 2053/

·       Approve the HRA 5-year Capital Programme totalling £920.52m

·       Note the 30-year Capital Programme for 2024/25 to 2053/54 totalling £2.493bn

·       Approve the inclusion of all Fairer Westminster investments, including the extension of the HRA Rent Support Fund by £1.050m for 2024/25 (to be earmarked to support tenants experiencing financial difficulty during the cost-of-living crisis) 

·       Approve a rent increase of 7.7% from 1st April 2024 in line with the maximum increase for social rent set by the national rent policy, whilst noting that the Council continues to exercise its discretion under the rent restructuring policy to set rents for re-lets (both new tenants and transfers) up to formula target rent

·       Approve an increase of 6.7% to the fees charged for garages, sheds and parking (in line with CPI at September 2023) from 1st April 2024 

·       Approve that tenant service charges be varied in line with estimated actual costs for 2024/25 from 1st April 2023 

·       Note the HRA reserves and balances for the 5-year Business Plan

 

Reasons for Decision

The Council is required to set a budget for the HRA and prepare a 30-Year Business Plan for the HRA on an annual basis. The report also provides the approval needed to set HRA tenant rents and other charges for the financial year 2024/25. It also outlines how the Housing Investment Plan supports the delivery of the Council’s Fairer Westminster vision, including its commitment to deliver new affordable homes whilst maintaining the condition of the existing housing portfolio. 

 

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed Councillor Begum to introduce the report.

 

Councillor Begum noted that the report presents a revised 30-year business plan for the HRA, with a sustainable and long-term plan that keeps it on sound financial footing.

 

Councillor Begum highlighted the recommended rent increase of 7.7% (CPI+1) and an extension to the Rent Support Fund for the next financial year which allows the HRA to absorb the impact of inflation, increase funding for frontline services and make additional capital funding available to increase the level of annual investment in housing stock.

 

Councillor Begum noted that in regard to the PDHU allocation, the Council has yet to identify its preferred option for replacement, but it is prudent that the HRA has sufficient headroom to cover any investment ahead of an outline business case being presented later in the year.

 

Sarah Warman noted that within the plan, the Council has built in several measures to ensure it remains resilient in the face of the challenging economic outlook, including a healthy reserve balance and contingency in the revenue budget.

 

RESOLVED: Cabinet approved the following recommendations to Full Council for consideration at its meeting on 6 March 2024:

·       Approve the HRA revenue budget for 2024/25

·       Note the HRA 5-year revenue budgets for 2024/25 to 2028/29and HRA 30-year revenue budgets for 2024/25 to 2053/

·       Approve the HRA 5-year Capital Pr%ogramme totalling £920.52m

·       Note the 30-year Capital Programme for 2024/25 to 2053/54 totalling £2.493bn

·       Approve the inclusion of all Fairer Westminster investments, including the extension of the HRA Rent Support Fund by £1.050m for 2024/25 (to be earmarked to support tenants experiencing financial difficulty during the cost-of-living crisis) 

·       Approve a rent increase of 7.7% from 1st April 2024 in line with the maximum increase for social rent set by the national rent policy, whilst noting that the Council continues to exercise its discretion under the rent restructuring policy to set rents for re-lets (both new tenants and transfers) up to formula target rent

·       Approve an increase of 6.7% to the fees charged for garages, sheds and parking (in line with CPI at September 2023) from 1st April 2024 

·       Approve that tenant service charges be varied in line with estimated actual costs for 2024/25 from 1st April 2023 

·       Note the HRA reserves and balances for the 5-year Business Plan