Central Government is expected to pay out your house rent! Yes, government is all set ready to roll out its new rental housing policy, which is expected to come into effect in the FY 2017-18. As per the policy, the housing rent of families below poverty line (BPL) will be paid by the government to the house owners.
It is stated that this is a 2,700 crore welfare scheme that will be implemented in 100 smart cities to give rent vouchers to the urban poor. After the three years of the ground work, the first component of this policy is likely to roll out now. The cost of the scheme is expected to be 2,713 crore each year. This scheme is expected to benefit the urban people and migrant population.
According to the policy, people below the poverty line will hand over the rent vouchers provided by government to the house owners. They in turn can redeem the rent by submitting the voucher to any city service bureau. In case the rent is more than the rent voucher limit stipulated by the government, the tenant should hand over the balance amount in cash to the house owner.
The value of rent voucher shall be decided by the urban local body based on the class or size of the dwelling unit and the market rate for rent prevailing in the city. The government is also working on the option of direct benefit transfer.
Census 2011 says that in the year 2001 around 27.5% of urban residents lived in rented houses. National Sample Survey (NSS) found that around 35% of urban households lived on rent in 2009. NSS has mentioned that since 1991 this proportion has remained steady.
An official from the government has stated that the government has also decided to use the recently implemented Benami Properties Act as one more source for the rental housing scheme. Their idea is to rent out the confiscated housed to people belonging to middle income group (MIG), lower income group (LIG) and economically weaker section (EWS) directly by them or through the state government.
The ministry is expected to prepare a Cabinet note to push the rental voucher scheme in the upcoming financial year.