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The Rent Scheme - how we work out your rent

Updated: 24 Apr 2014
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Points are based on the age, design and amenities in the property
Housing Executive property, Carrickfergus
We use a Rent Scheme to calculate the rent on most of our houses. Each house attracts points based on its age, design and amenities. The amount you pay in rent is based on these points.
The information below helps to explain how the scheme works and answers some frequently asked questions. This will help you work out how much the rent will be on the type of house you need. If you are already living in a Housing Executive home, you can check that your current rent is correct.

How is my rent charge worked out?

We use a points system to work out the amount of rent to charge. Points are awarded according to the age and type of property, number and size of rooms and facilities such as heating.
Points are deducted if a dwelling lacks certain basic amenities or has an unusual type of access.

How much is each point?

The value of a point is revised each year and this amount, multiplied by the number of points allocated to your home and this gives the amount of rent you will be charged.

How can I check my rent?

You can check your rent by estimating the number of points awarded to your home under the Rent Scheme using the table below. Your district office will be able to tell you the current value of a point and you can then check if your rent has been correctly calculated.
If you think your rent has been wrongly calculated contact your district office which will investigate and, if necessary, make any changes.

Type of accommodation

Feature Description Points
Detached (House, bungalow or cottage) 12
Semi detached (House, bungalow or cottage) 9
Terrace (House, bungalow or cottage) 8
Flat/maisonette 2 storeys or less 5
Flat/maisonette 3 storeys or more 2
Sheltered flat 2
Sheltered bungalow 3

Size/number of rooms

Feature Points
Bathroom with toilet 3
Separate bathroom 2
Internal toilet separate from bathroom 2
Living room 3
Living room with dining area 4
Dining room 2
Each double bedroom 3
Each single bedroom 2
Bedsitter 3
Kitchen 3
Kitchen with dining area 4

Sheltered dwelling

If you live in a sheltered dwelling, the rent is affected by the size of the property.
Feature Points
1 person sheltered dwelling 2
2 person sheltered dwelling 4
3 or more person sheltered dwelling 6

Heating

Is the house fully or partly heated?
Feature Points
Part House Heating
Property with space for 1 or 2 beds 1
Property with space for 3 or 4 beds 2
Property with space for 5 or more beds 4
Whole House Heating
Property with space for 1 or 2 beds 2
Property with space for 3 or 4 beds 4
Property with space for 5 or more beds 6
Individually controlled heating 1
Communal heating (district heating) 0

Age

How old is the house? If you aren’t sure, ask your district office.
Feature Points
Built before 1945 1
Built before 1945 but fully modernised 3
Built 1945-1955 3
Built 1945 - 1955 but fully modernised 4
Built 1956-1965 5
Built 1956-1965 but fully modernised 6
Built 1966-1975 7
Built after 1975 9

Shared access

Where access to a flat is shared, certain types of access affect the rent:
  • gallery - this is where the flat’s main entrance is off an external or internal corridor  where the access is exposed to the weather
  • gallery scissor – as above, but with a staircase dividing the blocks.
These types of access may have some kind of security in place:
  • controlled – Where the access has a lockable entrance door
  • without control – Where the access is open.
Finally, other flats, such as those in highrise buildings may have security in place:
  • communal controlled – Where a block of flats has a lockable front door or door entry system
  • communal without control – Where there is no such system in place.
Feature Points
Gallery or gallery/scissor without control -7
Gallery or gallery/scissor controlled -5
Communal without control -2
Communal, controlled 0

Independent access

If the main entrance to the flat is not in a shared area, then this is known as independent access. However, if it is part of a gallery or scissor block it may affect your rent.
Feature Points
Gallery or gallery/scissor blocks -5
Other 0

Garage

Feature Points
Garage either attached to the house or situated within the grounds 7

Absence of amenities

If the house is lacking any amenities it could mean a reduction in the rent you pay:
Feature Points
No cold water supply whatever -7
No hot water source -7
Outside pump and standpipe only -3
No mains electricity -7
Dwelling not served by mains sewer or septic tank -7

What is the difference between a single and double bedroom?

This depends on the size of the room. A single bedroom must be at least 3.7sq m (40sq ft) and a double bedroom must be at least 9.3sq m (100sq ft). The number of bedspaces in your home is related to the number of single and double bedrooms. For example a house with 1 single and 2 double bedrooms would have 5 bedspaces.

When is a living room treated as a living room with a dining area?

This depends on the size of the living room and the number of bedspaces and is calculated according to the table below. If there are 2 separate rooms then they will be considered as a living room and dining room, regardless of whether or not their combined area meets the standards referred to in determining living rooms and living room with dining area.
Bedspaces Size of living room Size of living room with dining area
1-2 bedspaces Less than 14.86sq m(160 sq ft) 14.86sq m and over
3-5 bedspaces Less than 18.58sq m(200 sq ft) 18.58sq m and over
6 or more bedspaces Less than 23.22sq m(250 sq ft) 23.22sq m and over

When is a kitchen treated as a kitchen with a dining area?

This depends on the size of the kitchen and the number of bedspaces and is calculated according to the table below.
Bedspaces Size of kitchen room Size of kitchen with dining area
1-2 bedspaces Less than 10sq m(107.6 sq ft) 10sq m and over
3-5 bedspaces Less than 12 sq m(129.2 sq ft) 12sq m and over
6 or more bedspaces Less than 15 sq m(161.5 sq ft) 15sq m and over

What if I carry out improvements to my home?

We will not charge rent if you carry out an improvement yourself. Any improvements, however, require our written approval before the work is carried out.

What if the Housing Executive carries out improvements?

In this case the rent charge will be amended to reflect the changes made. We must give you 4 weeks notice any time your rent is to increase. There will be no increase in charges after an adaptation for a person with a disability.

What about my rates charge?

Rates are not covered by the points scheme and are charged in addition to the rent. The Land and Property Service tells us  how much to charge you for rates. We will give you as much notice as possible of any rates due.

Where can I get further information?

If you would like more details of how the Rent Scheme works and how it affects you, contact your district office.