'Why the 'bedroom tax' should be scrapped' blog discussion

This is the discussion to link on the back of Martin's blog. Please read the blog first, as this discussion follows it.

Please click 'post reply' to discuss below.


  • Errata
    Errata Posts: 38,230
    First Post Combo Breaker
    The problem is the strategy, not the policy.
    .................:)....I'm smiling because I have no idea what's going on ...:)
  • I support tenants who are affected by the 'bedroom tax' to ensure they are claiming full entitlement of benefits and help them put in a claim for the discretionary housing payment. The vulnerable people who I have been working with are having to make a choice between eating, heating or paying their rent. Rent arrears is on the increase, so this policy is encouraging homelessness. There simply is not enough properties for people to downgrade and if they have rent arrears they are usually not allowed to downgrade, annoying if the said arrears come from the bedroom tax, so effectively they are being punished.
  • Triggles
    Triggles Posts: 2,281 Forumite
    Also important to point out that if they have rent arrears, then they're obviously struggling to pay rent, so they certainly can't afford the expenses involved in moving.

    And if there is a property available - they have to not only consider the cost of a move, but the difference in transportation for work, for school for their children (or themselves if they are in training/coursework), and childcare. Even a move across town can be massive change or become completely unworkable for someone that doesn't drive or can't afford to run a car as well.
    MSE mum of DS(7), and DS(4) (and 2 adult DCs as well!)
    DFW Long haul supporters No 210
    :snow_grin Christmas 2013 is coming soon!!! :xmastree:
  • If they really wanted to save money and free up housing, they would have adopted a carrot rather than a stick ... ie, at the bare minimum, the tax wouldn't be applied until after a certain period, or unless other suitable housing had been refused for no good reason ... though preferably, help in removal costs etc would also be made available (because when you consider social housing isn't as a rule carpeted/curtained or has white goods like a private rental, there are more removal and set up costs to be taken into account, on what is almost always a lesser income).

    By adopting the stick instead, it's pretty obvious their headline reasons were never actually the true intentional outcome ... because at present, when you add up the admin costs of processing appeals, hardship fund applications, evictions and emergency housing of the resulting homeless, not to mention foodbank and other charitable help claimed by the affected, the actual overall bill must have significantly increased rather than dropped ... and very little housing freed up in the process.
    DFW Nerd no. 884 - Proud to [strike]be dealing with[/strike] have dealt with my debts
  • If you own your own home you can be overcrowded and certainly will not be given an opportunity to gain a social tenancy yet we continue to subsidise those living in homes that are larger than their household needs. This is a good policy and just needs some fine tuning.
  • I don't agree with the bedroom tax, but neither do I agree with building new properties to help rectify the housing problem - apart from the fact that moving is expensive and many can't afford it!
    There are millions and millions of perfectly good buildings standing empty in our cities so why not refurbish them, divide some of them into flats and create more housing in this way. In order to build new properties these perfectly good buildings are demolished - there is absolutely nothing wrong with most of them and they are well built, have nicely proportioned rooms and most of them even have an outside space of some kind. They are perfect, with some time and effort, for habitation and would take the pressure off the housing situation - it just doesn't make sense and I think it's an awful waste of funds and time to demolish and rebuild, when refurbishment could be much more cost effective and much quicker. There are councils who are already implementing this scheme but more need to be encouraged to take part. Trouble is I believe the Government give big subsidies for new builds but not for refurbishment!!! I rest my case!!
  • Cisco001
    Cisco001 Posts: 4,003
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    I agree the concept bedroom tax in principle. However, I think start charging with one bedroom is a bit harsh.
    I would say it is OK to have one spare bedroom, but with 2 or more need to be charged.
    Or could the government allow those tenant take a lodger with 80% of lodger's rent pay back to government?
  • Naf
    Naf Posts: 3,160
    First Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker
    I support the idea that social tenants who have had additional bedrooms funded by the taxpayer should be encouraged to downsize, and that future social tenants should be aware that additional rooms will not be funded.
    There should be something which works in some similar way to LHA rates for private tenants which doesn't penalise people for an extra room, but doesn't lump the extra charge on the taxpayer either.
    Its not the idea that's the problem; its the implementation with typical Tory disregard for the effect on the poorest people in our society.
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.
    - Mark Twain
    Arguing with idiots is like playing chess with a pigeon: no matter how good you are at chess, its just going to knock over the pieces and strut around like its victorious.
  • all this talk about how "unfair" this subsidy is, not one person on here is saying about the thousands of people living in overcrowded accommodation.should these people get the top ups paid by the under occupiers? :beer:
  • In my mid twenties I had a well paid job, my own house and car and I paid my bills with money left over. I would have been in full support of 'bedroom tax' as I had worked hard to get where I was and earn the nice things I had. I was waiting to start a family until I knew I could afford one. When I lost my job (well paid) and found out I was just starting a family life was very very hard. To continue working during the recession I would of had to of travelled which is very difficult with severe morning sickness. So, I worked in a role that paid a lot less. We are still struggling and now do I agree with bedroom tax, well yes.

    I've just been working on our family tree and what is strikingly apparent is the conditions in which we used to live in and the lengths we went to to support our families. Now life was ridiculously harsh and I do not envy them but what I have learnt is that if there was work you go and find it, if there was a room going spare you take it. So to bring this into the 21st century if there's work you go and find it and if there's a spare room you go and find it?

    Are we to reliant and comfortable in the thought that I need a house with a garden, I need my flat screen tv, the kids Xbox and my car? We didn't have these things 50 years ago and families kept going!

    I know there are people with disabilities and single parents with no family to depend on and I'm sorry to say that it is because the rest of us are not pulling out socks up that those who really do need the attention are having to fight for what is deservedly theirs.

    (Sorry about the grammer but I'm doing this on my phone, and yes it is a luxury I can do with out but I can proudly say I've earned it)
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