Lowered Benefit cap could affect landlords from 8th May?

Lowered Benefit cap could affect landlords from 8th May?

11:04 AM, 13th April 2015, About 8 years ago 159

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If nothing is changed post election on the 8th of May the Benefit cap will be reduced from £500 to £440 pw in London with a lower cap in other regions of £396, 90% of the London figure.

As an example: A two parent household with three children receive £334 per week and then deduct the welfare benefit and child tax credit income to leave a maximum residual HB or LHA payable.  From the new cap figures this leaves a maximum of £62 per week in housing benefit outside the capital and £106 per week in London.

The question is will landlords risk renting their investments to benefit families who will only receive £275 per calendar month in HB or LHA towards the rent on a three-bed property? Or to a single parent with three children who will only receive £456 per month in HB to pay for a three-bed property in an area such as Liverpool with a typical three-bed private rent of £525 per month?

The last two years has seen some social landlords refuse to tenant a property with those under occupying due to the bedroom tax. Now landlords could face a greater financial risk, even on fully occupied properties, and so some may be forced to stop providing property to such households. Thus creating even greater pressure on council supplied social housing.

Mick Robertsbenefit cap

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Alan Loughlin

16:56 PM, 13th May 2015, About 8 years ago

hence why the libs were decimated at the poll booths, people are sick of liberal minded attitudes to spending our hard earned money on layabouts, it is time we took control, and stop the abuse. I believe this government will do just that, after being thwarted from doing so in the last parliament by the out of touch liberals.


17:26 PM, 13th May 2015, About 8 years ago

What we see with the benefits culture is a symptom of a totally mismanaged economy.

This problem ties in with globalisation, and cheap money. In the early 80's the big countries got together to go for globalisation. The benefits of tapping into a billion extra workers was cheap labour, cheap goods, cheap money and benefits all round for those in control and the developing economies.

The down side was to be felt by the local western populations because their jobs were being farmed out to a cheaper supplier. The top people knew exactly what was going to happen and so the benefits support culture was put in place to smooth a transition from no work to hopefully something which replaced that work.

This is the bit which was just ignored. Many were allowed to flounder claiming benefits without reeducating. Nothing was done year after year and this benefits culture has turned into a monster.

One solution has been to ignore all these idle people and keep paying them, while we imported cheap labour. The system is a complete joke and the problem seems to be accountability because no one has tried to address the situation.

Also it was down to cheap money which allowed which ever government to borrow and support 10m odd people to claim job seekers or sickness benefit. Now that the money has run out they are finally having to address this problem head on.

Our country is MUCH MUCH poorer than people realise. This has huge implications for all of us.

Lets just wait until the bond markets blow up and pricing of debt finally returns to normal. Imagine what it will be like when we have to pay out of our £700bn odd tax take £100bn in debt interest on the 2 trillion we will owe. It's 1.5 trillion at the moment, but it will soon be £2 trillion.

Quite simply we have to make tough choices. People will suffer, but really how do people expect to be given £400/500 a week without doing anything ? They are deluded just like most of the population for thinking this was a good idea in the first place.

Robert M

18:04 PM, 13th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Luke P" at "13/05/2015 - 16:53":

Hi Luke

Just got back from work, helping house someone with mental health problems, and helping someone else re-instate their benefit claim that was suspended in February because the person was unable to get any sense out of the DWP when he tried to contact them previously. Both suffer from serious mental and physical health problems. Neither of them live in London. Both needed help. This is where my "liberal minded" attitude decided to help them (free of charge), or rather my compassion for fellow human beings prompted me to help them. I did not need to do this, I could have left them to starve or live on the streets, and thus saved the taxpayer some money, but instead I chose to offer kindness, compassion, and actual assistance (my time, knowledge, and skills).

Anyway, got back from work to find that you want me to offer an alternative idea, something other than just cut everyone's welfare benefits and kick them out on to the streets. Sorry, I don't profess to be able to offer a solution for all of the UK's problems, but I have already agreed with the suggestion that providing food and clothing vouchers instead of cash may be worth investigating further so that the money allocated to individuals is actually spent on the things it should be spent on.

I also think that people should be housed to suit their needs, rather than their desires or aspirations, but the situation is not as simple as "well if they can't afford to live there then they should move elsewhere", as I hope I demonstrated with the question about low paid workers (which has not had a satisfactory answer yet).

Likewise, questions could also be raised about what to do about people who are disabled, should they be forced to move? If someone could afford to live in a place but was in a car accident and could no longer work should they then be forced to move out, they would be unable to afford to carry on living there without taxpayers paying for it, but it may have been out of their control, and certainly not a lifestyle choice. There are numerous other situations that raise these moral issues, none of which are addressed by the attitude of "taxpayers should not have to pay for others" or "if they can't afford it then they should move somewhere else".

Some people who are unemployed, are trying their best to get employment but are unable to get a paid job because of lack of skills or experience or references (or other valid reasons, e.g. illness or disabilities), and so they undertake activities to try to enhance their employability, e.g. training, voluntary work, etc, but of course they need somewhere to live while doing this. They could be providing those voluntary services in London or elsewhere, thus improving the levels of services in those areas and helping to keep the costs of services down. It is a complex interrelation and interaction between all these things.

Personally, I would encourage people to gain skills and experience (and thus also references), and encourage them to become useful members of the community (this can take many forms), but I would support them to do this in the areas in which they live, rather than force them out of London (or other areas) into ghettos for the poor.


18:30 PM, 13th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Ditto. It is a world we live in that other landlords do not understand. Good deeds will reward us all. Well done Robert, you should be proud of what you've done today.

Si G

21:38 PM, 13th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Robert Mellors" at "13/05/2015 - 18:04":

Hello Robert you have certainly done a good deed today to help those in need, as you say it is a complex scenario and one size does not fit all. As I have said many times that is precisely whome the council houses/flats are for - those in need, but as we all know most have been sold off which has exacerbated the present problem of suitable (council) housing in the right areas - does anyone remember the council flats which were sold off in Westminster ? You touched on disability ha ha sorry but i have loads of evidence of absolute breaches of the system, free cars, fee parking, free everything, no requirement to sign on and unfortunatly its blatently being flouted, again at the taxpayers expense. I dont know if the same applies in England but certainly in Scotland prisoners, drug addicts and single parents all jump the 20 or more year housing waiting list, most of the council housing was sold off and then re sold for profit, just look at a property databases to see the absurd discount then resale prices. As a letting agent i once offered a 3 bedroom townhouse in a Scottish City to let and the only people who could afford to rent it were families on benefits with four children that sums up the whole problem, hard working families could not consider renting the house. As a country we really need to get our priorities right and start by ending the right to buy and replace the council property that was sold off thereby correcting the mistake of the last thirty years. Unfortunatly governments look in five year timeframes and tend to repeat mistakes time and time again.

Si G

21:43 PM, 13th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "john " at "13/05/2015 - 17:26":

Absolutely right John, QE has been keeping the ship afloat for too long. I was thinking today driving in the countryside, when was the last time anyone saw someone with a brush and shovel doing any work ? How about getting some squads of unemployed to clean the roads and ditches, good manual work, they will get fit and have fresh air, I know its basic stuff but all this government freebies wont motivate them to work will it ?

Si G

21:53 PM, 13th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "AA Properties Wales " at "12/05/2015 - 23:45":

Yes AA i had not thought about that, council homes are the safety net but sadly i dont think there are many still in council ownership, oh yes lets give them a free car while were filling in the form and driving lessons and translation, anything else ?..............

Robert M

0:04 AM, 14th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Simon " at "13/05/2015 - 21:38":

I agree that the council housing should not have been sold off on the cheap, or at least it should have been replaced on a one for one basis, but we cannot turn back the clock and it has already gone. The Tories are now proposing to do the same with housing association properties, and I have commented on this proposal in a different thread on here (and suggested a realistic alternative strategy).

It was the Right to Buy scheme which so depleted the Council housing stock that spawned the 20 year waiting lists for average (non-homeless) families, but that is Maggie's legacy to the nation (among many other things, some good some bad). I do agree with you that the current social housing policies are unfair. I also agree that there have been abuses of the system (by some people) but there still needs to be "a system" in place for those that genuinely need help, and as yet nobody has come up with a realistic suggestion for this so we are stuck with what the various governments to date have left us with, and unfortunately the simple idea of "cut the benefits", "cap the benefits", etc, does not solve the problem because it hurts those who genuinely need the help.

Simply cutting benefits to stop the taxpayers paying for the shirkers and lazy people who just don't want to work, also seriously hurts those who genuinely need help (genuinely disabled or seriously ill, as well as people who are working hard but on low pay, as well as those who give their time and effort free of charge to their communities (volunteers), as well as those who are striving to educate or skill themselves to become more useful and valued members of society - paid or otherwise).

Simply cutting benefits is not the answer, changing the system to one that is fairer and that helps people change for the better, is what I believe we should be striving for, but I know that it is far far easier for people to say "cut the benefits" than it is to work out a fairer system for all. And I also know that those people who do try to help others, rather than punish them for their situation, will be called "liberal minded" (and many worse things), but I would rather carry on helping people rather than punishing or stigmatising people based on a limited set of prejudices and stereotyping, after all, we are all only one car crash or one nervous breakdown or one serious illness or one redundancy, away from being one of these people that so many of the commentators on here want to cut the benefits for. - I can't speak for other landlords on here, but I have been homeless, I have been unemployed, I have had to live on benefits, and I have seen this and far worse happen to others, so I can speak from a standpoint of knowledge and experience.

As a landlord, I am very concerned about the effect of the lowered benefit cap on the incomes of fellow landlords, and it will reduce the quality and quantity of housing available. As a compassionate human being I am even more concerned about the impact on the lives of the most needy and vulnerable members of society. As someone who can see society more widely, I'm also concerned about the ghettoisation of society whereby groups are stereotyped and stigmatised and forced out of their homes to live where the State makes them move to, cuts their income, and forces them to perform manual labour in order to receive enough food to live on (I think Hitler had a similar "solution" and used similar methods).

Mick Roberts

7:41 AM, 14th May 2015, About 8 years ago

I agree, they all have Sky & I don’t. And I’m about the only one not on cannabis.

If you saved money when you 7 years old, you save when you 37 years old.

Ha ha ooh yes & dogs that s__t on garden & bring vets bills.

Yes warnings for children going forward, don’t China operate something along these lines?

The alternative is ‘Welfare’, that is why it is there. For the minimum living, these people aren’t loaded, if they do have sky, they don’t eat right, if they do have dog, some’at else suffers etc. etc.

We keep focusing on London, this lower cap going to affect & spill out to other parts too.

Very good answers Robert.
And me too been homeless, & unemployed, I had a car to live in though, so at least had shelter.

Si G

8:19 AM, 14th May 2015, About 8 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Robert Mellors" at "14/05/2015 - 00:04":

Robert, your analogy of ghettos and stigmatization of the needy is worrying, I can't believe that only the Green Party proposed stopping the sale of council homes, you say that HA homes are to be sold now, the way things are going we may have tent cities soon.

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