Council bedroom tax comes into effect next month

The government claims the forthcoming ‘bedroom tax’ will cut the £23bn annual bill for housing benefit, encourage people to get jobs and free up more living space for overcrowded families.

However, housing charities are warning that it will result in greater homelessness and increased levels of rent arrears.

With so much controversy surrounding the issue, it’s important to know what the ‘bedroom tax’ is and how it works.

What is the bedroom tax?

A forthcoming change in housing benefit rules has been dubbed the ‘bedroom tax’ – and the name has stuck.

Typically, those who claim housing benefit to help pay rent receive between £50 and £100 a week, but this is all about to change come April.

From next month, families will be assessed for the number of bedrooms they actually need, and those deemed to have too much will have their payments slashed.

How is this determined?

If tenants are found to have one spare room, the amount of rent eligible for housing benefit will be cut by 14%.

If they are deemed to have two or more spare rooms, the cut will stand at 25%, resulting in an average loss of about £14 to £16 a week.

Under the new rules, each adult or couple is allowed one bedroom and children under 10 are expected to share. Children under 16 are expected to share if they are the same gender.

Who will be affected?

The change will affect council tenants and those who rent from housing associations. Private sector tenants will not be affected.

The government estimates that 660,000 households will have their benefit cut, which equates to roughly a third of social sector claimants. Only those of working age will suffer cuts.

Posted by: WarrenWilson Categories: Finance Tags: , , , 5 Comments

5 Responses to Council bedroom tax comes into effect next month

  1. avatar Mrs Taylor says:

    Why aren’t non-working
    pensioners affected by the
    `bedroom tax?’ Why is it
    only those of working age
    who will be affected by the cuts?

  2. avatar Mrs Taylor says:

    Why are most pensioners
    who live in council tenancy
    or charitable housing ie church property,
    automatically entitled to housing benefit and pay no rent?

  3. avatar Chris Longley says:

    I am against benefit scroungers like most people but this is a return to victorian times. I am sure there is a proportion of people who may have been recently made redundant in council accomodation who through no fault of their own will suffer a penalty. Its a quite deliberate attempt to penalise the people with the most hardship, indeed a tax on the least fortunate. “We are all in it together” is the media spin by the government. But do I have shares in the banks or government? No. I run and ran my finances adequately to be quite well off so like all of us we are paying the price of their incomptence and thieving. Last year a homeless man was imprisoned for stealing a gingerbread man…..yet still we await banking prosecutions. Pigs in the trough springs to mind!
    If there was enough accomodation available to mix and match families living situations maybe it can work but we havent. Why should people be forced to move or face penalty?
    I am praying the next asteroid come straight bang in the finance sector or westminster……

  4. avatar Ian Carter says:

    The article entitled ‘Council bedroom tax comes into effect next month’ is disgracefully inaccurate. This measure has nothing to do with Councils and is entirely a central government tax on the less well off. Councils up and down the country are working hard to mitigate its impact and ensure people affected are well informed and supported but have no power whatsoever to stop it or influence it. It is entirely the coalition government’s scheme. Councils have to administer Housing Benefit but the rules are set by Government. Please correct this and print an apology to Councils.

  5. avatar patrick ryan says:

    if your occupying a home that exceeds your requirements then it is time to move out and make way for people with bigger families such as people from outwith the uk who tend to have larger families than uk citizens ? think about it call me a sceptic