Revealed: Jarrow council tenants’ rent arrears

IN DEBT ... residents of Jarrow Central Estate top the rent arrears league.
IN DEBT ... residents of Jarrow Central Estate top the rent arrears league.

COUNCIL tenants living in and around the centre of Jarrow have the highest percentage of rent arrears in the town, a new report reveals.

Customers on the Jarrow Central estate owe a total of £68,731 as of November, members of the town’s Community Area Forum were told.

That equates to 3.42 per cent of customers being behind in their payments. Coming in second is Jarrow South at 3.3 per cent (£42,623) and Low Simonside is third at 3.17 per cent (£69,663,)

The town’s best-performing estate in terms of arrears is Fellgate where only 1.19 per cent of tenants are behind in their payments, with a combined debt of just £8,886. Another area performing well is Simonside West, where £15,491 is owed – 2.6 per cent.

In a report to the committee, Julie Molyneaux, South Tyneside Homes’ housing services manager for the town, outlines the action being taken to recover the debt. She said: “We are monitoring accounts to ensure swift action where default payments have occurred.

“We continue to work in partnership with South Tyneside Council, the Citizen Advice Bureau and Welfare Rights by offering and subsequently referring tenants who have benefit issues.

“We also continue to promote Barclays Bank, The Leeds and The Bridges community bank to promote basic bank accounts and to enable direct debit payments.

“Notices are served on tenants warning that possession proceedings may be taken against a tenancy if rent payments are not maintained.”