Housing associations: record surpluses again this year
Largest associations record £3 billion surplus – up a quarter
England’s largest housing associations recorded a record £3 billion combined surplus today as revealed on the Homes and Community Agency’s ‘global accounts’. This result continues a series of record breaking surpluses in recent years and represents a 25% increase on last year.
A number of associations have been pointing to government policy and the state of the economy to justify cuts to staffing levels, pay and conditions and to services – these figures underline the need to challenge such moves. It is clear that many association chief executives are keen to squeeze their staff as part of what they see as a move to a more commercial housing system, but claims that this is driven by necessity are not borne out by the financial figures for the sector.
Operating margin up
The operating margin also increased from 26% to 28% as costs increased by less than revenues. A third of the surplus came from the largest twenty associations by number of homes managed. There was a significant growth in surplus from for sale activity, from £324m in 2014 to £501m in 2015.
Unite reps will want to publicise these figures to members in support of pay claims.