Somewhere floating in the ether must be the logic behind the train of thought which says we are in for tough times so let’s make it harder for those who are struggling.

Council house tenants in Leeds could face a rent rise of up to nine per cent.

The political knockabout has already started with blame being firmly dropped at the feet of the Government – the current and the previous.

It seems that the city council has no other option, under current rules, but to increase rents to the same level of housing associations.

As the huffing and puffing goes on and justifications are countered the tenants, in line with thousands of other people, have just one question on their minds. Just how on earth are they going to pay the increase?

Local authorities have to make substantial cuts to their budgets and in the main are going through that pain barrier, which in turn is hitting hundreds of families hard.

Prices are going up left right and centre and pay packets are being frozen or cut.

What is missing from this financial equation is guidance and advice for the tenants. It is unbelievable that in these days the only option seems to be to demand more for less.

Everyone knows that next year is set to be tough, but to set hares running before a decision is made – in this case the actual level of the rent rise – could be questioned.

We are assured a great deal of work is being done to keep the rise to an acceptable level.

For those families who are already struggling and those entering the New Year with fearful minds let us hope the rise is set at rock bottom.