Changes to your council rent

We are required by law to give you four weeks' notice of any increase in rent to your council property. We send the rent increase notice to all tenants regardless of any housing benefit or universal credit housing element you receive.

Rent increases are produced annually they will not include any housing benefit or housing element you are entitled to. If you are in receipt of universal credit you will need to advise them of the change of rent to your property for them to reassess your claim. You do not need to advise housing benefit of the change as we do this automatically for you, they will send details to you of your housing benefit entitlement in the first week of April.

Service charges

Your rent increase notice may include service charges. These charges may vary to the type of property or scheme you are in. 

If you are living in a General Needs property, please read the information in the General Needs Service Charges tabs below. For information about Retirement Housing, you should read the information under Retirement Housing Service Charges tabs below.

Please contact us if you are not receiving the listed services.

Difficulty paying your rent

If you are experiencing difficulties in paying your rent, go to Housing Benefit and Universal Credit - help for paying rent

Paying rent by direct debit or standing order

When paying your rent by standing order, you will need to inform your bank of the new rent amount from the effective date shown on your rent increase notice letter.

If your rent is paid to us by direct debit we will automatically adjust this for you, you do not need to take any action. If you would like to set up a direct debit please go to pay your rent where you can download a direct debit form.

The following service charges can be claimed from Housing Benefit. 

For services marked with an asterisk * the charges are based on the actual costs from the previous financial year. For example, in 2022/23 tenants’ charges are based on the actual costs incurred in 2020/21.

Caretaking service*

This service charge relates to caretaking service costs incurred for individual blocks.  

Lift maintenance

This service charge relates to all expenditure relating to lifts and it is only applied to blocks which have lifts.

General cleaning*

This service charge relates to the general cleaning of communal areas.

Window cleaning*

This service charge relates to the window cleaning in communal areas.

Communal gas*

This service charge only applies to blocks which have a communal gas supply.

Communal water*

This service charge only applies to blocks which have a communal water supply.

Communal electricity*

This service charge only applies to blocks which have a communal electricity supply.

Communal heating repairs and maintenance*

This service charge relates to the repairs and maintenance of the communal heating system. It is charged only to blocks which have communal heating. 

Communal lighting repairs and maintenance*

This service charge relates to the repairs and maintenance of the communal lighting. It is charged only to blocks which have communal lighting.

Grounds maintenance

This service charge relates to the ground’s maintenance contract and any ad-hoc grounds work. 

Laundry equipment*

This service charge relates to the repair and maintenance of tumble dryers and washing machines. It is charged only to blocks which have laundry requirement. 

Management fee

This service charge is a calculation of 15% of the total of all the Housing Benefit-eligible service charges specific to each block.

The following service charges cannot be claimed from Housing Benefit. 

All charges are based on the actual costs from the previous financial year. For example, in 2022/23 tenants’ charges are based on the actual costs incurred in 2020/21.

Personal gas

This service charge relates to the councils' gas supply which feeds individual flats within a block. 

Personal electricity

This service charge relates to the councils' electricity supply which feeds individual flats within a block.

Personal water

This service charge relates to the councils' water supply which feeds individual flats within a block.

The following service charges can be claimed from Housing Benefit. 

For services marked with an asterisk * the charges are based on the actual costs from the previous financial year. For example, in 2022/23 tenants’ charges are based on the actual costs incurred in 2020/21.

Retirement housing service only

This service charge relates to the costs of running the Retirement Housing Service and is apportioned equally between all tenants. It includes costs such as water hygiene testing, door entry system (flats only), pest control, TV Licenses and the Retirement Housing Advisors office running costs (telephone, internet, printers).

Retirement housing staff costs

This service charge relates to the Retirement Housing teams staff costs and is apportioned equally between all tenants.

Retirement housing caretaking service - Eastbourne Homes tenants only*

This service charge relates to caretaking service costs incurred for individual blocks.

Retirement housing solar panels - Lewes District Council tenants only

This service charge relates to the recovery of the initial installation costs.  These costs are being recovered over a 20 year period.  This service charge is only applied to blocks which have solar panels installed.  

Retirement housing lift maintenance

This service charge relates to all expenditure relating to lifts and it is only applied to blocks which have lifts. 

Retirement housing general cleaning*

This service charge relates to the general cleaning of communal areas.

Retirement housing window cleaning*

This service charge relates to the window cleaning in communal areas.

Retirement housing communal gas*

This service charge only applies to blocks which have a communal gas supply.

Retirement housing communal water*

This service charge only applies to blocks which have a communal water supply.

Retirement housing communal electricity*

This service charge only applies to blocks which have a communal electricity supply.

Retirement housing guest rooms

This service charge relates to the estimated costs of maintaining the guest rooms.  It is charged only to blocks which have guest rooms. It represents the cost of maintaining the guest room over a 5-year period.

Retirement housing communal rooms

This service charge relates to the costs of maintaining communal rooms. It is charged only to blocks which have communal rooms. It represents the cost of maintaining the communal room over a 5-year period.

Retirement housing communal heating repairs and maintenance*

This service charge relates to the repairs and maintenance of the communal heating system. It is charged only to blocks which have communal heating.

Retirement housing communal lighting repairs and maintenance*

This service charge relates to the repairs and maintenance of the communal lighting. It is charged only to blocks which have communal lighting.

Retirement housing renewal of heating systems

This service charge relates to the installation of new hot water cylinders into each flat at Seaford House. The cost was split over 15 years, the first year of charges began in 2008. 

Retirement housing grounds maintenance

This service charge relates to the ground’s maintenance contract and any ad-hoc grounds work. 

Retirement housing laundry equipment*

This service charge relates to the repair and maintenance of tumble dryers and washing machines. It is charged only to blocks which have laundry requirement.

Retirement housing management fee

This service charge is a calculation of 15% of the total of all the Housing Benefit-eligible service charges specific to each block.

The following service charges cannot be claimed from Housing Benefit. 

Except for Lifeline, all charges are based on the actual costs from the previous financial year. For example, in 2022/23 tenants’ charges are based on the actual costs incurred in 2020/21.

Retirement housing personal gas

This service charge relates to the councils' gas supply which feeds individual flats within a block.

Retirement housing personal electricity

This service charge relates to the councils' electricity supply which feeds individual flats within a block.

Retirement housing personal water

This service charge relates to the councils' water supply which feeds individual flats within a block.

Retirement housing personal wi-fi

This service charge relates to the wi-fi supplied to individual flats within a block. 

Retirement housing – Lifeline

The retirement housing Lifeline charge reflects the cost incurred to supply a 24-hr alarm call and pendant system available in all retirement housing properties.  It includes purchasing, repairs and maintenance of the call system equipment, the call answering service, and a proportion of the Retirement Housing Team costs.