Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Rent arrears up in wake of bedroom tax

Social landlords taking part in a benefit reform focus group have seen rent arrears soar among tenants affected by the bedroom tax.

Inside Housing set up the focus group in March to monitor the impact of benefit reform on social landlords and their tenants. This week the group of 10 landlords revealed 11,132 of their tenants who have been hit by the bedroom tax are now in arrears - 3,382 more than were in debt at the outset.

Between them, our group reported that 53 per cent of tenants affected by the bedroom tax are now in arrears - up from 35 per cent in March.

Robert Nettleton, chief executive of 3,978-home Coastline Housing, which is part of the forum, said: ‘Many of these people are vulnerable and on a low income.’

 

Readers' comments (3)

  • Well what an absolute surprise I didn't see THIS coming, did you? Blimey I bet the government must be so embarrassed by this that they will do an immediate U turn and stop the bedroom tax, remove all arrears pertaining to this terrible idea and institute what was originally planned the 2% tax on mansions... In the meantime everybody duck as the flying pig squadrons fly overhead.

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  • Spot on Michael. Shock, horror .... who would have thought that arrears would go up with the introduction of the bedroom tax. Now let me think ..... those affected are claiming housing benefit because they have insufficient income (and therefore qualify for help with their rent and council tax). They were probably not in arrears but suddenly the Government passes legislation supported by the LibDems that saddles them with between £50 to £90 a month bill whereas previously there was not one. Also Council Tax benefit is cut so they need to find another £10 a month. This is in a time of extended recession and high unemployment. So you need financial help and suddenly you have a bill of maybe a £100 a month with no extra income and arrears went up did they!!! - amazing isn't it.

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  • I wonder what might happen next..... Perhaps an increase in eviction notices leading to more families and individuals approaching Local Authority housing teams and homelessness charities. Housing Officers are already stretched to find suitable temporary accommodation and charities are undergoing further cuts. Then where will these people go?

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