Tag Archives: Housing benefit news

Benefit Cuts Price Poor Families Out of Buy to Let Buy to Let News, Latest Articles, Lettings & Management, Property Market News

Rents of around a third of private rented homes in Britain are beyond the financial reach of the poorest families as government welfare cuts start to bite.

More than 800,000 buy to let homes are now too expensive for housing benefit claimants and many face a stark choice – cut living costs to pay rents or try to find a cheaper home, says research published by the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH). Continue reading Benefit Cuts Price Poor Families Out of Buy to Let

Judge Kicks Out Housing Benefit Legal Challenge Latest Articles, Lettings & Management, Property Market News

Judges have deemed new government rules to cap housing benefit and rental home sizes do not discriminate against poor families.

The Child Poverty Action group launched a legal challenge against the shake-up of housing benefit rules as part of the government’s universal credit policy.

As part of the welfare review, the government changed housing benefit rules in April to restrict the maximum size of a rented home to four bedrooms and to limit the cash councils pay families on housing benefit. Continue reading Judge Kicks Out Housing Benefit Legal Challenge

Council wants to invest taxpayer cash in buy to let Buy to Let News, Latest Articles, Property Market News

1 green property amongst a row a red properties

"Councillors want to buy rundown buy to lets"

Councillors want to dabble in property investment by spending millions on purchasing ‘substandard’ buy to let homes.

The plan is for Newham Council, East London, to buy and let the homes to improve housing standards – and to make a killing on capital appreciation as well.

The council is banking on cheap borrowing rates offered to local councils to underpin the scheme, but throw the deal open to private and institutional investors.

The scheme depends on the outcome of financial negotiations with the government ministers. No details of how the scheme would work and how much investment would be needed to refurbish and manage property are not finalised.

Blackpool Council had a similar scheme on a smaller scale that recently failed. The council bought property worth £2.7 million with the intention of renovating and letting them as homes only to run out of money – the portfolio was sold to a housing association for £3.

The council area that has benefitted from investment billions generated by the new London Olympic 2012 stadiums and infrastructure.

Newham has an estimated 35,000 buy to let and houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) and the council claims tenant turnover rates are 60% compared with just 5% for social housing.

Councillors are formulating a social lettings allocation policy that pushes employed people ahead of those on benefits in queues for social housing.

Sir Robin Wales, Newham’s directly elected mayor, told Inside Housing magazine: “It is clear to us that we have to stabilise the private sector or we will just become a transit camp. That’s why we want to invest – there is a logic driving us.

“We want to purchase property in the private sector and run our own private rented sector. That way we can have longer tenure. That is a big issue for me.”

Sir Robin added that buying private properties would increase the council’s options for housing people on benefits.

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