Social housing tenants find themselves in debt due to welfare reforms
- 28 Mar
A study has been conducted by a group of social landlords titled, Real Life Reforms, to reveal the impact welfare reforms are having on social housing tenants.
Interviews have been conducted with 83 tenants in January, many of whom have been tracked since July when the study began. Reported by 24dash.findings revealed:
• 77% of households are in debt and the average owed by residents who have taken part in previous rounds of the study is now £2,943 - up 28%.
• £34.41 is the average weekly debt repayment - an increase of 58%.
• 18.5% of income is spent on fuel costs, compared to the national average of 5.1%.
• 46% of participants report having nothing left each week to live on once rent and essentials such as food and bills have been paid.
• 69% of households spend less than £40 per week on food and nearly a third of households spend less than £20 per week on food.
• Use of local shops has halved with less than 5% of participants using them.
• 60% of active jobseekers applied for between 20 and 40 jobs in the last three months but 71% were not offered an interview.
• 70% of applicants for discretionary housing payments have been successful.
The study is still continuing and landlords hope that ongoing findings will help them fully understand the impact welfare reforms are having on tenants and help them shape their polices, influence decision-making and inform national policy-makers.
Andy Williams, director of neighbourhood services at Liverpool Housing Trust and chair of the Real Life Reform steering group, said: "Householders are falling into more debt, including some taking money from loan sharks, and it's a real concern that people are having to borrow to cope with the cost of everyday living. In our first report in September, people said they'd resist falling further into debt, yet just six months later this picture has emerged. Nearly 8 out of 10 people in the study owe money. With an underlying average debt of £2,943, some may never pay this off given that they have, on average, as little as £3 left at the end of each day for food."
Northern Housing Consortium chief executive Jo Boaden said: "Real Life Reform has been following our households for nine months now and this, our third report, provides a powerful update. We have been engaging with parliamentarians over the course of Real Life Reform, using evidence from the research to show how the reforms are affecting people and what operational or policy changes may need to be considered. Employment opportunities remain a key strand of the research. We will be working with NHC members and stakeholder partners to explore how the housing sector and Job Centre Plus can further improve the work-seeking experience which, as our report demonstrates, can provide such a positive impact on an individual or family's life."
What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions
- 09 Jun
THERESA MAY PLEDGES TO REPLACE THE MENTAL HEALTH ACT 1983
According to Ms May, the new bill would introduce the following:According to the Tories, the proposals were described as the biggest change to mental health treatment law in over 30 years.Ms May...
- 30 May
THE PRESENT FIRST PRIME MINISTER OF SCOTLAND IS TO PLEDGE AGAINST ANY PLANS TO PRIVATISE THE NHS
It is also expected that Sturgeon will do the following as proof of her party's commitment to fighting against further austerity:Sturgeon said this before Tuesday's manifesto launch:"While the polls...
- 17 Mar
402 MILLION POUNDS WILL BE INVESTED IN COUNCILS WITH THE GREATEST HOMELESSNESS DEMAND FROM APRIL 2017
Presently, funding is only used for homeless households and not for the prevention of homelessness in the first instance.The funding by the Department for Communities and Local Government is set to...
- 15 Mar
RULES AROUND PERSONAL INDEPENDENCE PAYMENTS MAY CHANGE ON THURSDAY
Ministers have advised chief executives of over 30 charities which claimed that people will be left without vital financial support, to restrict access to a disability benefit.The Disability Benefits...
- 06 Mar
THE GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN URGED BY THE BMA TO INCREASE HEALTH SPENDING BY 10 BILLION POUNDS
This increase in health spending to a proportion of GDP that matched that of the 10 leading economies across Europe could pay for at least 35,000 extra beds a day and many more GP's, according to the...
- 05 Sep
MANY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE REFUGES AT RISK OF CLOSING DUE TO HOUSING BENEFIT CAP
Women who have been victims of domestic violence as well as their children are at risk of falling into the hands of their violent partners if the government caps housing benefit in the social sector...
- 03 Sep
Data on disability benefits refused by DWP
DWP officials have refused a second request for basic information on disability benefits using the “Section 22” exemption they used previously, reports The Independent.The Department had been...
- 02 Sep
UN to investigate how welfare reforms will affect disability rights
A disability charity in Scotland has said it’s been contacted by the UN’s Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as part of an inquiry into Britain’s treatment of people with...
- 01 Sep
Benefit cuts affecting 48,500 families in Liverpool
Analysis from Liverpool City Council has found that around 48,500 households are likely to lose their benefits due to new government reforms, reports the Liverpool Echo. Councillor Jane Corbett has...
- 27 Aug
Suicide guidance given to DWP staff ahead of welfare reforms
Workers at the DWP have been given a six-point plan on how to deal with people who are denied benefits and are feeling suicidal, reports the Independent.Call centre staff have been instructed to...
What are the Future Funding Arrangements for Supported and Sheltered Housing? "Really enjoyable presentation, knowledge of presenters was excellent" M.D. - Community Integrated Care