Thousands to learn if their homes are at risk
The National Housing Federation is urging councils to share information with housing associations as thousands of households find out their homes could be put at risk by benefit cuts.
The umbrella body for housing associations wants local authorities to pass on information to social landlords so they can identify individuals and families who need extra support ahead of the introduction of the benefit cap in April 2013.
This will set a limit on the maximum amount of benefit that can be received, expected to be £500 a week for lone parents and couples, and £350 a week for single people without children.
The Department for Work and Pensions has begun to send out letters to households that will be affected by the cap.
The NHF said it will affect more than 90,000 people (more than 67,000 households), with 44 per cent of those living in social housing.
Chief executive David Orr said: ‘The letters will come as a shock to many vulnerable families. The overall benefit cap is a crude measure that fails to reflect the stark differences in housing costs across the country, caused by the desperate shortage of affordable housing.’
He added: ‘With under a year to go before many people start losing their homes, there’s no time to lose.’