What are we doing?
We are supporting calls for rent flexibility for any student renters experiencing hardship right now. For details, please see our Legal page.
We are asking for Leeds City Council to support our campaign for student rent relief. We wrote to 15 Councillors on the 5th May, setting out what we're asking for, which is primarily around encouraging landlords to take up Mortgage Holidays to allow them to provide flexibility:
From Cllr Illingworth's response: "One thing that I can advise is to make use of the Leeds City Council’s help line on 0113 378 1877. This is for two reasons: (1) some students may be eligible for significant help, and (2) this is an effective way of signalling to the Council where more support is needed."
Cllr Garthwaite acknowledged that while LCC and the Universities recommend flexibility, they cannot enforce it as the contract is a legally binding document but will discuss with colleagues on possible routes forward.
Cllr Brooks responded in support and highlighted our concerns to the executive member for Housing chair of Development Plans Panel (in relation to Purpose Built Student Accommodation costs).
Cllr Marshal-Katung reassured us that landlords should not be sending out eviction letters at this time following the governments' legislation.
Cllr Bentley is taking our concerns to the Environment and Housing Scrutiny Board which meets next week.
Letter was sent to:
Councillors Judith Blake, Rebecca Charlwood, Debra Coupar, Al Garthwaite, Jonathan Pryor, Neil Walshaw, Hannah Bithell, John Illingworth, Fiona Venner, Javaid Akhtar, Kayleigh Brooks, Abigail Marshall-Katung, Jonathan Bentley, Chris Howley and Christine Knight.
We have also written to Christopher Pincher MP, Housing Minister, to ask for clarity on the imminent moving day. View it below:
Amy met with Fabian Hamilton MP and raised moving weekend uncertainty (alongside financial hardship, highlighting the average weekly rent costs and to ask for PMQs to be raised about the loss of the maintenance grant).
Email sent to the CEO of Leeds City Council to ask for clarity on moving weekend restrictions, highlighted average weekly rent costs.
Update: FAQs for housing and moving day now available.
Many testimonials collected that inform our understanding of housing providers' support or lack thereof. Beginning work on a motion to Leeds City Council to limit the rent private providers can set.
Further support: ACORN
ACORN is a member-led campaigning organisation supporting & empowering low-income communities across the country to fight for a better life. They've supported a number of students recently seeking contract terminations & rent reductions. You can view their page on rent reductions here, or write to them at firstname.lastname@example.org for further support with housing issues.