Tuesday, 03 March 2015

UKIP would scrap the bedroom tax

The UK Independence Party would scrap the bedroom tax if it came into power.

Andrew Charalambous, the housing spokesperson for Nigel Farage’s party, says the current government’s under-occupation penalty – often referred to as the bedroom tax – is ‘nonsensical’.

Under the policy, which came into force last month, social tenants of working age on housing benefit will have their payments cut if they have one or more spare bedrooms.

Mr Charalambous, an unelected private sector landlord, said: ‘We’d absolutely scrap the bedroom tax. It’s just tokenism and has no real effect. It causes a lot hardship, pain and suffering. Housing should be there to make people’s lives better.’

His comments come in the wake of UKIP’s strong performance in this month’s local elections: the party took 147 seats in England, a gain of 139.

In this week’s Inside Housing, Mr Charalambous reveals the party’s stance on a range of issues affecting the housing sector, including planning, homelessness and affordability.

He claims the dominant pressure on housing in the UK has come from ‘the unprecedented immigration of the last decade’. He said: ‘Withdrawal from the European Union would be the only practical way to alleviate this effect on our housing demand.’

Other UKIP policies include the establishment of a strategy for developing brownfield sites and the creation of a national register of homeless people.

Gavin Smart, director of policy and practice at the Chartered Institute of Housing, said it was interesting to see UKIP’s housing priorities and ideas for local housing initiatives. He said: ‘As the election approaches we want to see extensive public debate about all parties’ overall vision for housing and how their housing policies link to other priorities such as economic growth and social care.’

Readers' comments (17)

  • Joe Halewood

    CIH gives credence to UKIPs alleged housing policy .... hahahahahahaha - Sorry shouldn't laugh as shooting yourself in both feet can really be painful!

    ...and policy presumably created by a PRS landlord. Wow CIH kneecaps must be painful too!

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  • Joe well said......
    But do these crypto Tories have a social policy? The cult of Maggie Farage does not care about the urban poor. Inside Housing must do better!!!

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  • Chris

    At least it is not another claim to blame Europe for our own legislators stupid decisions, economic failings, and of course being the subject of international ridicule.

    Ah, but then of course, they go on to explain how it is still all Johnny Foriegner's fault, so leaving Europe is the obvious solution to enable the UK to better compete in a global economy!

    I think that perhaps UKIP may wish to resurrect Sidney James as their new leader, and populate the rest of their key policy spokespeople with the rest of the Carry On crew.

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  • Easy to ridicule UKIP - but how many Coalition policies would Labour revoke?

    Indeed Labour kick started LHA...

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  • Chris

    As I've mentioned before Thomas, I see little difference between the real Tories and the red Tories, just as there is little difference between the real Nationalists and the blue ones in UKIP.

    Is your argument really that because Labour are as bad as the Tories that we should give UKIP a go - check your history books to see where that may lead.

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  • The electorate will vote on the government it deserves in due course - be they right or wrong

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  • Melvin Bone

    At last a party Chris & Joe can support.

    So now you both approve of this UKIP policy I assume?

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  • Chris...

    To whom do you think we should give "a go", instead?


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  • Chris

    Gelvin - don't be silly.

    Ian - none of the above - I'd like to see a return to the proud traditions of the Atlee Government, or even the proven success of State control of the means of production, and sharing of the wealth as carried out by the Churchill Government preceding it. Both would recognise the policies as Social Capitalism, and I'm sure all can recognise the massive success such policies were. It was heading off in the wrong direction of Consumerism and the attempt to restor Elitism that has been the nation's undoing. Oddly enough such ideals lie at the centre of the UKIP ideology, along with proven failures such as protectionism and antilibertarianism.

    The causes of failure are easy to see. Policies that work are easy to point to. What is missing is any political leadership prepared to put the people's interests first.

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  • Melvin Bone

    Chris. So you do not want the bedroom tax to be scrapped?

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  • Downsizing with the bedroom tax

    17 July 2014

    The price for underoccupying a home is high for many vulnerable people. Jess McCabe visits Stoke-on-Trent to find out how landlords are attempting to help

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