Housing association criticised for £104 garage rent increase

Jean Hughes outside her garage

Jean Hughes outside her garage

First published in News Basingstoke Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A BASINGSTOKE grandmother has criticised Sentinel Housing Association after they raised the rent for her garage by 20 per cent.

Jean Hughes, of Normanton Road, Oakridge, was told by the Kingsclere Road-based housing association earlier this year that it was increasing her rent from £10 per week to £12 per week, meaning that she will have to pay an extra £104 a year to rent her garage in a nearby block.

The 70-year-old grandmother-of-two has called on Sentinel to lower the rent back to the original rate because she believes it is not justified.

She claims that Sentinel does not maintain the garages and has only been out to paint them twice in 30 years.

The mother-of-two told The Gazette: “Two coats of paint in 30 years is not maintaining them. Some of the garages are not being rented out and I feel they are putting the rent up on ours because they aren’t renting them all out.

“I also have to pay 20 per cent value added tax on that for them to do nothing, really. We have had it broken into a few times.

“I want to see them put the rent back down to £10 a week or at least be in line with inflation as this is well above inflation.

“Two-and-half per cent wouldn’t have been quite as bad but an extra £2 a week on top of everything else is hard.”

Angela Gibson, income and lettings manager at Sentinel Housing Association, said: “We raised our garage rental prices earlier this year. This was the first time we’d increased them since 2008 when the Government changed the rate of VAT.

“We have a rolling, five-year programme of work, which we carry out on our garages. This includes looking at the roof, the condition of the doors, timber frame repairs and re-decoration.

“This year we’re improving 600 of our garages. As we don’t think it’s fair for customers who live in our homes to subsidise the cost of doing this work the rental income we get from our garage customers will help to pay for the improvements we’re making.”

Comments (26)

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3:18pm Sat 16 Aug 14

Folkestone Saint says...

If it was £2.00 every year fair do's but £2.00 raise after 6 years I think is fair, had they increased it yearly at 33pence per week you would be worse off in the long term.
If it was £2.00 every year fair do's but £2.00 raise after 6 years I think is fair, had they increased it yearly at 33pence per week you would be worse off in the long term. Folkestone Saint
  • Score: 13

4:04pm Sat 16 Aug 14

Peter H. says...

No mention of course that the State Pension also went up by 25%.

Sentinel is a highly respected non-profit organisation, any surplus is spent on maintenance and building new homes.

Perhaps this woman thinks they should stop helping others or their staff should have their salaries frozen for six years.

There are people who can only dream of getting a housing association tenancy, she should try the private sector and let someone else have a chance.
No mention of course that the State Pension also went up by 25%. Sentinel is a highly respected non-profit organisation, any surplus is spent on maintenance and building new homes. Perhaps this woman thinks they should stop helping others or their staff should have their salaries frozen for six years. There are people who can only dream of getting a housing association tenancy, she should try the private sector and let someone else have a chance. Peter H.
  • Score: 13

6:34pm Sat 16 Aug 14

jonone says...

Imagine if we inferred her increase in pension wasn't justified!!

Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from?
Imagine if we inferred her increase in pension wasn't justified!! Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from? jonone
  • Score: 10

1:55pm Sun 17 Aug 14

Peter H. says...

jonone wrote:
Imagine if we inferred her increase in pension wasn't justified!!

Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from?
LOL! Heaven forbid you suggest such a thing!

Most people would be grateful to have their rent frozen for SIX YEARS.

So here's an idea: freeze her pension for six years then give her a 20% increase and tell her its 'well above inflation'.
[quote][p][bold]jonone[/bold] wrote: Imagine if we inferred her increase in pension wasn't justified!! Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from?[/p][/quote]LOL! Heaven forbid you suggest such a thing! Most people would be grateful to have their rent frozen for SIX YEARS. So here's an idea: freeze her pension for six years then give her a 20% increase and tell her its 'well above inflation'. Peter H.
  • Score: 6

10:58pm Sun 17 Aug 14

Buster Preciation says...

Surely their mandate is to provide affordable housing for those that cannot afford to buy. Shelter is necessary but a garage isn't, it's a luxury that a lot of people who own their own house can't afford. If you don't want to pay then do what everyone else who don't expect to be given everything do. Park on the road.
Surely their mandate is to provide affordable housing for those that cannot afford to buy. Shelter is necessary but a garage isn't, it's a luxury that a lot of people who own their own house can't afford. If you don't want to pay then do what everyone else who don't expect to be given everything do. Park on the road. Buster Preciation
  • Score: 13

8:42am Mon 18 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years, furthermore, it’s not just housing association tenants that rent garages from Sentinel.
Jonone, you must temper your vendetta against housing association tenants, that said we have been down that road many times before.
I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years, furthermore, it’s not just housing association tenants that rent garages from Sentinel. Jonone, you must temper your vendetta against housing association tenants, that said we have been down that road many times before. popleyrebel2
  • Score: 1

9:19am Mon 18 Aug 14

laurence86 says...

If she is not happy to pay £624 to keep her car garaged for the year then she should simply stop using the service. I’m not sure what she hoped to achieve by going to the local paper or why the Gazette felt that the public would be overly concerned. Perhaps there was no peacock drama in Overton this week.
If she is not happy to pay £624 to keep her car garaged for the year then she should simply stop using the service. I’m not sure what she hoped to achieve by going to the local paper or why the Gazette felt that the public would be overly concerned. Perhaps there was no peacock drama in Overton this week. laurence86
  • Score: 5

9:21am Mon 18 Aug 14

laurence86 says...

“Two coats of paint in 30 years is not maintaining them. Some of the garages are not being rented out and I feel they are putting the rent up on ours because they aren’t renting them all out.” – What about the nice new wooden fence you are resting your arm on?
“Two coats of paint in 30 years is not maintaining them. Some of the garages are not being rented out and I feel they are putting the rent up on ours because they aren’t renting them all out.” – What about the nice new wooden fence you are resting your arm on? laurence86
  • Score: 0

11:26am Mon 18 Aug 14

THX 1138 says...

I notice that some contributors have used this article as an excuse to have a pop at social housing tenants. However, as popleyrebel2 has pointed out, garages can be rented out by anyone - you don't have to be a housing association tenant. The woman in question mentions paying VAT - I may be wrong but I think Sentinel tenants don't pay VAT, so it may well be that she owns her own property or is paying a mortgage. If that is the case then it makes jonone's rant seem rather foolish - where do these owner occupiers get their sense of rights and entitlement from?!!!
I notice that some contributors have used this article as an excuse to have a pop at social housing tenants. However, as popleyrebel2 has pointed out, garages can be rented out by anyone - you don't have to be a housing association tenant. The woman in question mentions paying VAT - I may be wrong but I think Sentinel tenants don't pay VAT, so it may well be that she owns her own property or is paying a mortgage. If that is the case then it makes jonone's rant seem rather foolish - where do these owner occupiers get their sense of rights and entitlement from?!!! THX 1138
  • Score: 1

12:46pm Mon 18 Aug 14

Ambivalent says...

In my area, I would say the majority of people who have garages from Sentinel are actually people who have bought their houses and are owners rather than renters. The sad thing is so many of them are used for storage rather than to keep cars in, while cars are increasingly being parked on side roads and verges. If you can afford it, fair enough, £2 per week increase doesn't seem excessive and as Sentinel have said, why should I, as a social housing tenant subsidise possibly a lot of homeowners, so they can store stuff and not use them for the use they are intended. What I believe the council should be doing is not including garages as parking spaces when they have planning applications for conversion to flats and HMO's. Most of the parking problems around Housing Association properties are as a result of too many houses being converted to flats and HMO's without any consideration for where these people are going to park.
In my area, I would say the majority of people who have garages from Sentinel are actually people who have bought their houses and are owners rather than renters. The sad thing is so many of them are used for storage rather than to keep cars in, while cars are increasingly being parked on side roads and verges. If you can afford it, fair enough, £2 per week increase doesn't seem excessive and as Sentinel have said, why should I, as a social housing tenant subsidise possibly a lot of homeowners, so they can store stuff and not use them for the use they are intended. What I believe the council should be doing is not including garages as parking spaces when they have planning applications for conversion to flats and HMO's. Most of the parking problems around Housing Association properties are as a result of too many houses being converted to flats and HMO's without any consideration for where these people are going to park. Ambivalent
  • Score: 6

1:26pm Mon 18 Aug 14

JJ38JJ says...

THX 1138 wrote:
I notice that some contributors have used this article as an excuse to have a pop at social housing tenants. However, as popleyrebel2 has pointed out, garages can be rented out by anyone - you don't have to be a housing association tenant. The woman in question mentions paying VAT - I may be wrong but I think Sentinel tenants don't pay VAT, so it may well be that she owns her own property or is paying a mortgage. If that is the case then it makes jonone's rant seem rather foolish - where do these owner occupiers get their sense of rights and entitlement from?!!!
Your post is very true but I don't think it's incompatible with a lot of the comments you disagree with. If Sentinel want to rent out their garages then it should be seen as a separate business from the core one which is the provision of housing. As such it is simply a profit-making business operating along the basic principles of supply and demand. And Buster is right - if an 'occupier' of one of their garages doesn't like the rent then go to a competitor or park on the road.
The Gazette is guilty of linking the issue of garage rent to the different topic of affordable housing provision for media sentionalisation reasons when there is no actual business link apart from the identity of the landlord.
[quote][p][bold]THX 1138[/bold] wrote: I notice that some contributors have used this article as an excuse to have a pop at social housing tenants. However, as popleyrebel2 has pointed out, garages can be rented out by anyone - you don't have to be a housing association tenant. The woman in question mentions paying VAT - I may be wrong but I think Sentinel tenants don't pay VAT, so it may well be that she owns her own property or is paying a mortgage. If that is the case then it makes jonone's rant seem rather foolish - where do these owner occupiers get their sense of rights and entitlement from?!!![/p][/quote]Your post is very true but I don't think it's incompatible with a lot of the comments you disagree with. If Sentinel want to rent out their garages then it should be seen as a separate business from the core one which is the provision of housing. As such it is simply a profit-making business operating along the basic principles of supply and demand. And Buster is right - if an 'occupier' of one of their garages doesn't like the rent then go to a competitor or park on the road. The Gazette is guilty of linking the issue of garage rent to the different topic of affordable housing provision for media sentionalisation reasons when there is no actual business link apart from the identity of the landlord. JJ38JJ
  • Score: 3

4:00pm Mon 18 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

Spot on, I know of many “none housing association tenants” who have garages on their property and still rent 1/2 from Sentinel for the purpose of storage, 2 have their own business while one other uses his for a workshop.
So pick the bones out of that Jonone.
Spot on, I know of many “none housing association tenants” who have garages on their property and still rent 1/2 from Sentinel for the purpose of storage, 2 have their own business while one other uses his for a workshop. So pick the bones out of that Jonone. popleyrebel2
  • Score: -4

5:22pm Mon 18 Aug 14

jonone says...

popleyrebel2 wrote:
I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years, furthermore, it’s not just housing association tenants that rent garages from Sentinel. Jonone, you must temper your vendetta against housing association tenants, that said we have been down that road many times before.
Must be like the vendetta you have against me for daring to have an opinion that is different to you, though I note you fail to pick on the several others with the same opinion as me.
[quote][p][bold]popleyrebel2[/bold] wrote: I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years, furthermore, it’s not just housing association tenants that rent garages from Sentinel. Jonone, you must temper your vendetta against housing association tenants, that said we have been down that road many times before.[/p][/quote]Must be like the vendetta you have against me for daring to have an opinion that is different to you, though I note you fail to pick on the several others with the same opinion as me. jonone
  • Score: -2

5:59pm Mon 18 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

Quote from Jonone
“ Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from?” un-quote
3RD comment in as usual you just can’t help yourself, furthermore I have plenty of quotes from you supporting my claim that you have a very unhealthy vendetta against housing association tenants.
However, you are spot on, I will always challenge you because you are resentful, jealous and a complete snob.
Have a nice day
Quote from Jonone “ Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from?” un-quote 3RD comment in as usual you just can’t help yourself, furthermore I have plenty of quotes from you supporting my claim that you have a very unhealthy vendetta against housing association tenants. However, you are spot on, I will always challenge you because you are resentful, jealous and a complete snob. Have a nice day popleyrebel2
  • Score: -5

1:03pm Tue 19 Aug 14

Folkestone Saint says...

popleyrebel2 wrote:
I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years, furthermore, it’s not just housing association tenants that rent garages from Sentinel.
Jonone, you must temper your vendetta against housing association tenants, that said we have been down that road many times before.
How does "I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years", have any bearing on the story ?
[quote][p][bold]popleyrebel2[/bold] wrote: I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years, furthermore, it’s not just housing association tenants that rent garages from Sentinel. Jonone, you must temper your vendetta against housing association tenants, that said we have been down that road many times before.[/p][/quote]How does "I don’t know many people that own their own house, however there are thousands that are paying a mortgage and will own their house for some considerable years", have any bearing on the story ? Folkestone Saint
  • Score: 3

7:16pm Tue 19 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

With respect Folkstone saint your bit of kilter there, house owner were introduced to the debate by Buster, I was only making an observation that I don’t know many house owner however, I know of plenty that are mortgages up to their eyeball and as my old mum taught me “you don’t own anything until you paid from it” unless it’s a gift.
I would like to make one more observation, many of those who are paying for the houses on finance (mortgage) have converted their own garage in to an extra bedroom and are parking on the road or renting one from Sentinel.
With respect Folkstone saint your bit of kilter there, house owner were introduced to the debate by Buster, I was only making an observation that I don’t know many house owner however, I know of plenty that are mortgages up to their eyeball and as my old mum taught me “you don’t own anything until you paid from it” unless it’s a gift. I would like to make one more observation, many of those who are paying for the houses on finance (mortgage) have converted their own garage in to an extra bedroom and are parking on the road or renting one from Sentinel. popleyrebel2
  • Score: -1

7:31am Wed 20 Aug 14

jonone says...

popleyrebel2 wrote:
Quote from Jonone
“ Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from?” un-quote
3RD comment in as usual you just can’t help yourself, furthermore I have plenty of quotes from you supporting my claim that you have a very unhealthy vendetta against housing association tenants.
However, you are spot on, I will always challenge you because you are resentful, jealous and a complete snob.
Have a nice day
Hmmm, collecting quotes from me eh?

Looks like we need an improvement in our mental health care, whatever you are receiving clearly isn't working.

Stalking freak.
[quote][p][bold]popleyrebel2[/bold] wrote: Quote from Jonone “ Where do these social housing tenants get their sense of rights and entitlement from?” un-quote 3RD comment in as usual you just can’t help yourself, furthermore I have plenty of quotes from you supporting my claim that you have a very unhealthy vendetta against housing association tenants. However, you are spot on, I will always challenge you because you are resentful, jealous and a complete snob. Have a nice day[/p][/quote]Hmmm, collecting quotes from me eh? Looks like we need an improvement in our mental health care, whatever you are receiving clearly isn't working. Stalking freak. jonone
  • Score: -4

8:40am Wed 20 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

Jonone
No stalking you’re not that important however all topics and comments are in the public domain, check the Gazette achieves.
That said I do have copies of those I’ve been involved in and it’s true to say I use them for reference.
Jonone No stalking you’re not that important however all topics and comments are in the public domain, check the Gazette achieves. That said I do have copies of those I’ve been involved in and it’s true to say I use them for reference. popleyrebel2
  • Score: -2

9:16am Wed 20 Aug 14

Folkestone Saint says...

popleyrebel2 wrote:
With respect Folkstone saint your bit of kilter there, house owner were introduced to the debate by Buster, I was only making an observation that I don’t know many house owner however, I know of plenty that are mortgages up to their eyeball and as my old mum taught me “you don’t own anything until you paid from it” unless it’s a gift.
I would like to make one more observation, many of those who are paying for the houses on finance (mortgage) have converted their own garage in to an extra bedroom and are parking on the road or renting one from Sentinel.
Well here some simple maths for you, my home that I will own outright in 4 years time has a garage and utility room that I paid £5000 for in 1991, that equates to 6 years rent, and if I want to downsize as the kids are all but left I can have a nice cheque for say £100,000 and still own my next home outright, i.e. no rent, so your constant knocking of us home owners smack's more of jealousy than anything else.
p.s. "you don’t own anything until you paid from it", well, you never do if you rent it.
[quote][p][bold]popleyrebel2[/bold] wrote: With respect Folkstone saint your bit of kilter there, house owner were introduced to the debate by Buster, I was only making an observation that I don’t know many house owner however, I know of plenty that are mortgages up to their eyeball and as my old mum taught me “you don’t own anything until you paid from it” unless it’s a gift. I would like to make one more observation, many of those who are paying for the houses on finance (mortgage) have converted their own garage in to an extra bedroom and are parking on the road or renting one from Sentinel.[/p][/quote]Well here some simple maths for you, my home that I will own outright in 4 years time has a garage and utility room that I paid £5000 for in 1991, that equates to 6 years rent, and if I want to downsize as the kids are all but left I can have a nice cheque for say £100,000 and still own my next home outright, i.e. no rent, so your constant knocking of us home owners smack's more of jealousy than anything else. p.s. "you don’t own anything until you paid from it", well, you never do if you rent it. Folkestone Saint
  • Score: 2

9:58am Wed 20 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

your constant knocking of us home owners smack's more of jealousy than anything else.

Please, never raised the issue before, Come back in four years when do own your own house.
your constant knocking of us home owners smack's more of jealousy than anything else. Please, never raised the issue before, Come back in four years when do own your own house. popleyrebel2
  • Score: -1

10:42am Wed 20 Aug 14

Folkestone Saint says...

popleyrebel2 wrote:
Spot on, I know of many “none housing association tenants” who have garages on their property and still rent 1/2 from Sentinel for the purpose of storage, 2 have their own business while one other uses his for a workshop.
So pick the bones out of that Jonone.
Many eh? sure you do, if they are not complaining about the increase there are no bones to be picked, unless it contravines any rental agreement
[quote][p][bold]popleyrebel2[/bold] wrote: Spot on, I know of many “none housing association tenants” who have garages on their property and still rent 1/2 from Sentinel for the purpose of storage, 2 have their own business while one other uses his for a workshop. So pick the bones out of that Jonone.[/p][/quote]Many eh? sure you do, if they are not complaining about the increase there are no bones to be picked, unless it contravines any rental agreement Folkestone Saint
  • Score: 1

11:15am Wed 20 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

What on earth are you going on about?? How many toys have got in that pram of your.
Don’t forget come back in 4 years when you do own your house, put it on your bucket list.

I truly admire those who have bought their own home, and at the same time I respect those who say,” we are buying our own house” where I do have a problem is with those who say “we own our house ” we are home owner, when in fact they haven’t even paid of the interest on their mortgage.
What on earth are you going on about?? How many toys have got in that pram of your. Don’t forget come back in 4 years when you do own your house, put it on your bucket list. I truly admire those who have bought their own home, and at the same time I respect those who say,” we are buying our own house” where I do have a problem is with those who say “we own our house ” we are home owner, when in fact they haven’t even paid of the interest on their mortgage. popleyrebel2
  • Score: -2

11:29am Wed 20 Aug 14

Folkestone Saint says...

popleyrebel2 wrote:
What on earth are you going on about?? How many toys have got in that pram of your.
Don’t forget come back in 4 years when you do own your house, put it on your bucket list.

I truly admire those who have bought their own home, and at the same time I respect those who say,” we are buying our own house” where I do have a problem is with those who say “we own our house ” we are home owner, when in fact they haven’t even paid of the interest on their mortgage.
Is that toys I own or toys I'm renting, my post makes purfect sense, you are choosing it not to, and when people say they own their own home when they still have a mortgage, they do own it, it only becomes the lenders property if they do not keep up payments, if you apply for a loan one of the questions is
do you A.own, B.rent C. forces over sea's, you are being very pedantic with your judgement of someone who is buying
[quote][p][bold]popleyrebel2[/bold] wrote: What on earth are you going on about?? How many toys have got in that pram of your. Don’t forget come back in 4 years when you do own your house, put it on your bucket list. I truly admire those who have bought their own home, and at the same time I respect those who say,” we are buying our own house” where I do have a problem is with those who say “we own our house ” we are home owner, when in fact they haven’t even paid of the interest on their mortgage.[/p][/quote]Is that toys I own or toys I'm renting, my post makes purfect sense, you are choosing it not to, and when people say they own their own home when they still have a mortgage, they do own it, it only becomes the lenders property if they do not keep up payments, if you apply for a loan one of the questions is do you A.own, B.rent C. forces over sea's, you are being very pedantic with your judgement of someone who is buying Folkestone Saint
  • Score: 1

1:29pm Wed 20 Aug 14

Jonty11 says...

Here's a thought..........

As someone so rightly said, shelter (i.e. a home) is essential, garages are not.

So with so many people on the housing register (and so many renting garages who are not Sentinel tenants) why not....

Stop renting ANY garages - knock them all down and build more social housing!

Simples really!
Here's a thought.......... As someone so rightly said, shelter (i.e. a home) is essential, garages are not. So with so many people on the housing register (and so many renting garages who are not Sentinel tenants) why not.... Stop renting ANY garages - knock them all down and build more social housing! Simples really! Jonty11
  • Score: 0

1:49pm Wed 20 Aug 14

popleyrebel2 says...

Spot on jonty11.
Spot on jonty11. popleyrebel2
  • Score: 0

2:07pm Wed 20 Aug 14

Folkestone Saint says...

Jonty11 wrote:
Here's a thought..........

As someone so rightly said, shelter (i.e. a home) is essential, garages are not.

So with so many people on the housing register (and so many renting garages who are not Sentinel tenants) why not....

Stop renting ANY garages - knock them all down and build more social housing!

Simples really!
The irony is if you build new properties you have to provide parking spaces for them, so part of your post is excellent as people would then have to use the "garages/parking space" for just that, rather than fill the garage with stuff and then park on the already over crowded streets.
[quote][p][bold]Jonty11[/bold] wrote: Here's a thought.......... As someone so rightly said, shelter (i.e. a home) is essential, garages are not. So with so many people on the housing register (and so many renting garages who are not Sentinel tenants) why not.... Stop renting ANY garages - knock them all down and build more social housing! Simples really![/p][/quote]The irony is if you build new properties you have to provide parking spaces for them, so part of your post is excellent as people would then have to use the "garages/parking space" for just that, rather than fill the garage with stuff and then park on the already over crowded streets. Folkestone Saint
  • Score: 2

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