Higher housing prices to hit owners of ’empty’ flats


Utilities for the 2-room apartment with a total of 70 square meters and no registered inhabitants cost more than two million rubles.

The January itemized utility bills cover as much as two blanks. In one you can find the prices for water supply and sanitation. In the other – remaining utilities, except electricity and gas that are paid separately by meter readings.

The new account has prices for sanitary maintenance of entrances, their lighting, lift maintenance, the energy that it consumes.

The energy of the elevator will be calculated depending on the number of tenants: the more members, the higher maintenance cost of the elevator you have to pay.

The fee for its maintenance and lighting of entrances is calculated depending on the number of apartments.

In addition, the beginning of the year saw the 33% rise in tariffs for heating and hot water. These items are the most costly to the Belarusians. The rate of water consumption per each registered dweller is 140 liters per month. It is paid on a subsidized cost. Anything in excess of this norm has to be paid according to the rates that fully cover the cost of their provision. Also, the owner of the apartment, where no one is registered, has to pay the full cost of the netrance maintenance.

It turns out that residents of the rented apartments, where no one is registered officially and nobody lives permanently will be forced to pay the most.

Minsk City Executive Committee demands dweller to cover utilities and fees for the use of residential premises punctually by the 25th day of each following month. Within 5 days of the debtor they issue warnings, and after the 30th they disable the hot and cold water and electricity.

There are the following ways to collect payment for housing and communal services: placement of the debtor’s information on a special list at the information boards and a lawsuit.

On January 20, the Council of Ministers issued a decree #32 “On Amendments to the Resolution #1166 of the Council of Ministers of December 30, 2013.” According to it, on January 1, tariffs for heating and hot water rose by 33%.

On February 15 was introduced a resolution ruling on permissible prices for housing and communal services. “The document was adopted to cover the costs of providing public utility services,” says the official website of the Council of Ministers.

The ordinance prescribes regional executive committees and Minsk city executive committee to set the upper limit of prices for water drainage, water supply, heat for heating and hot water, maintenance of residential buildings, elevators, removal of solid municipal waste.

Prices should be calculated taking into account the projected average rate of the Belarusian ruble against the US dollar (22,179 Br) and the consumer price index (115.1%)

“This is a game using accounting tricks, says economist Syarhei Chaly. – In practice, people will not pay less. The same it was with the tariffs for benefit holders that were not real.”

Among the factors contributing to the increasing price for housing services are the requirements of the IMF, according to which citizens have to reimburse 100% of the expenses on utilities and transportation.

“In order to quickly get money from the international fund, they are trying to show that we are closer to the 100% border. In 2010, before the election, people were told that their salaries would be 1,000-2,000 dollars, but then it would be necessary to compensate for the entire range of services like housing and transportation. What now? Lukashenka fulfilled only one of the two parts of the promises,” said Syarhei Chaly.

Another reason for price increase is the elimination of cross-subsidies, where businesses pay a lot of utilities, and the population – little.

“It is planned to reduce the load on the plants, respectively, so that their products become more competitive in comparison with the products of neighboring countries. But here also only one promise is fulfilled: now everyone will pay 100%,” said Chaly.


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