Housing Minister Protects Tenants Against Bedroom Tax
- 18 Mar
Scottish Housing Minister says landlords should do all they can to protect tenants from bedroom tax, and council in England follows suit.
Margaret Burgess has advised that all Scottish councils follow the example of Dundee Council, which is protecting tenants who cannot make up the shortfall in rent caused by the bedroom tax.
The Scottish Government has openly opposed the housing benefit cut that will come in to force in April, and have called for the UK Government’s scheme to be scrapped.
Dundee Council has made a committment not to evict any tenant due to increased payments from bedroom tax, if they are assessed as genuinely doing all that can be reasonably expected to in order to avoid falling into
Ms Burgess also made landlords aware of a loop hole to avoid bedroom tax, as in certain circumstances it may be possible to reclassify rooms so they are not considered bedrooms. For example, using an extra room to store equipment related to a disability and therefore not as a bedroom.
The same move has been done in England, and Brighton & Hove City Council is the first local authority in the country to take a similar stance and promised that none of its social tenants will be evicted if they cannot afford to pay the bedroom tax.
She said steps would be taken to ensure that tenants don't take advantage of the proposals, and that those pushed into arrears by the bedroom tax were doing everything they could to pay their rent.
Councillor Liz Wakefield said:
The so-called 'spare room subsidy' is yet more immoral and harmful legislation from this morality-free coalition government. We cannot throw people out onto the streets just because they're unable to pay it.
I will therefore be bringing proposals that seek to ensure no household will be evicted from a Brighton and Hove City Council owned home as a result of ‘spare room subsidy' rent arrears.
Mrs Burgess said:
I have made the Scottish Government's opposition to the bedroom tax absolutely clear. Indeed, I put the case for it to be scrapped in the strongest terms to Lord Freud when we met in London.
This will undoubtedly be leaving tenants, some of whom could lose a quarter of their housing benefit in April, seriously worried.
That is why we have made an extra £2.5 million available to social landlords to ensure people affected by housing benefits changes have the advice and support they need. That is on top of the £5.4 million we have already provided to advice services to help those affected by benefit reforms.
But we simply cannot mitigate all the negative impacts of welfare reform or the bedroom tax.
- 02 Nov
THE ONS PLANS TO CHANGE THEIR DECISION TO MAKE HOUSING ASSOCIATIONS PUBLIC BODIES
According to reports by 24 Housing, the ONS said the following:Gavin Smart, Chartered Institute of Housing's deputy chief executive also said:"Although we have been expecting this decision for some...
- 30 Aug
RECENT ANALYSIS FINDS THAT THE HELP TO BUY SCHEME HAS ADDED TO THE INFLATION OF HOUSE PRICES
The analysis of the Help to Buy Scheme revealed the following:The chief executive of Paradigm Housing Group, Matthew Bailes, said:" ... clearly, it worked well for developers, and for providers, it...
- 22 Aug
A NORTH WALES COUNCIL REVEALED THEIR WAITING LIST FOR NEW HOMES HAS REACHED BREAKING POINT
The north Wales Council revealed their waiting list for new homes has reached "breaking point".According to Clare Budden, Flintshire Council's community enterprise chief officer said:"There are...
- 17 Aug
HOMELESSNESS POLICY IS UNDER REVIEW IN A NORTHAMPTONSHIRE COUNCIL
Kettering Borough Council has amended its letters to homeless residents to let them know of their right to request a temporary accommodation review.According to an ombudsman, Michael King:"People in...
- 15 Aug
FINANCIAL CONSTRAINTS HAVE CAUSED THE CLOSURE OF MANY CHILDREN AND YOUTH CENTRES
Local Government Association (LGA) made the following findings:Chair of the LGA's children and young people board, Richard Watts, said: "The reality is that services for the care and protection of...
- 11 Aug
RESIDENTS OF BUILDINGS IN LEDBURY ESTATE, SOUTHWARK, SOUTH LONDON WILL BE MOVED OUT TEMPORARILY
The buildings in Ledbury Estate in Southwark have been constructed in a similar way to Ronan Point, a tower block in Newham which collapsed in 1968 as a result of a gas explosion, killing three. An...
- 10 Aug
THERE IS A DECLINE IN THE HOUSING MARKET IN LONDON AND OTHER PARTS OF THE SOUTH EAST OF ENGLAND
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) made the following findings:Chief Economist at Rics, Simon Rubinsohn:"Sales activity in the housing market has been slipping in the recent month...
- 07 Aug
REPORT FINDS THAT PEOPLE ARE INTENSELY SUFFERING FROM LACK OF AFFORDABLE HOMES IN SCOTLAND
According to the report by "Shelter":Shelter's deputy director, Alison Watson, said:"This report shows the disproportionate impact of Scotland's housing crisis on young people and private renters who...
- 02 Aug
NEW REPORT BY THE PUBLIC ACCOUNT COMMITTEE IN WALES COMMENDS HOUSING ASSOCIATIONS
The report which was put together after nine months of inquiries stated the following:Nick Ramsey, Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, said:"Generally, we found governance and regulation within...
- 31 Jul
LONDON COUNCIL URGES THE GOVERNMENT TO MAKE MEASURES TO END LETTING FEES FOR PRIVATE RENTERS
The London council say urgent action is needed because the government has not provided "a clear timescale to introduce its own measure", Letting Agent Today, reports.Last year, the government had...
Responding to the DWP Consultation: Housing Benefit Reform - Supported Housing "I thought this briefing was very good and very useful. The presentation was clear, well argued and I always find Michael gives me food for thought even if I don't agree with everything he says. I really like the way he facilitates a discussion in the room and I learn as much from other participants as I do from the presenter which is always good. Right length, right tone." R.P. - Richmond Fellowship