Business secretary Vince Cable has said the Liberal Democrats will not support Iain Duncan Smith’s calls to cap child-related benefits to families with two children.
Mr Duncan Smith, the work and pensions secretary, said yesterday morning – ahead of a speech at the Cambridge Public Policy think tank – that families claiming child-related benefits may find the amount they are entitled to capped at two children.
Thousands more tenants in the North East could be trapped on the social housing waiting list following the Government’s latest benefit changes.
North East lettings expert Ajay Jagota has spoken out about the possible impact of the proposed cuts and changes and the effect it could have on housing.
Direct payment of housing benefits to landlords rather than tenants will be allowed – but only in Northern Ireland.
Landlords are now urgently calling for the move by the Department for Work and Pensions to be copied in the rest of the UK.
The DWP (Department for Work and Pensions) has introduced new rules that will see jobseekers who repeatedly turn down work have their benefits stopped for three years.
Until now, jobseekers who failed to actively seek work could have their payments stopped for up to six months. The DWP claims that jobcentre staff were forced to sanction 495,000 claimants last year, 72,000 of which refused an offer of employment.
A landlord has been hit with a record fine of £27,400 in the borough which is bringing in blanket landlord licensing of all 35,000 private rental properties in its patch from January 1.
Newnham Council in London brought the prosecution after tenants, including children, were said to have been discovered living in a slum.
There has been an 86% increase in workers claiming housing benefit in the last three years as private rents across England soar, according to a new report.
Analysing the latest Government figures, the National Housing Federation’s (NHF) Home Truths report warns that the number of working housing benefit claimants, currently 903,440 of the 5.03 million caseload (as of May 2012), is rising by 10,000 more people every month.
Ask any housing advice or homelessness officer what the most common question is that they get asked, apart from “Can I have a council house please?” and you will usually find it is “Do you know any landlords or agents who take DSS?”
In London at the moment there are between 5 and 9 people chasing every rental property. Although figures vary, depending on who you read what isn’t in dispute is the fact that landlords don’t have any problems finding tenants and can rent properties perfectly happily without councils, and yet councils need landlords to meet the massive demand for housing.
DSS tenants get a bad press - often unfairly so. Here are the advantages, and disadvantages, to renting to this type of tenant.
1. According to research, DSS tenants stay in properties for twice as long compared with non-DSS ones.
2. You can apply to the council to get housing benefit paid directly to your account if you have a good reason (like a failed credit check).
3. It can be harder to evict a DSS tenant.
Peers have raised concerns about the impact of the bedroom tax on disabled people – and said discretionary housing payments will do little to help the problem.
Peers debated the housing benefit regulations in the House of Lords on Tuesday. The regulations introduce the bedroom tax, which will see an estimated 660,000 social housing tenants with spare rooms docked an average of £14 per week in housing benefit. The government estimates the policy will save £500 million a year.
More than a quarter of Tory MPs are private landlords – and have no interest in helping first-time buyers.
The allegation has been made by PricedOut, a campaign for affordable house prices, which is also calling for all letting agent fees to be declared unlawful.
In the Tory Conference this week, George Osborne announced the welfare budget was to be cut in order to try and lift the UK out of the recession.
Housing benefits came under fire from prime minster David Cameron, who stated that housing benefit claimants were living in properties that other workers could only dream of.
A new investigation by Shelter has revealed that complaints about private landlords have rocketed.
The charity put in Freedom of Information requests to all 326 local authorities in England and received responses from 310.
Protesters held an ‘inspection’ of local letting agents on Saturday to draw attention, they said, to high rents, short-term tenancies, discrimination against housing benefit claimants and agents’ high fees.
The protest apparently resulted in some agents shutting their doors while it was taking place.