So much for communities…
Maybe I’m missing something, but in the week that the ‘spare room subsidy‘ kicks in, accompanied by the mass demonisation of those ‘living in luxury’ off the state, shouldn’t we be more concerned about the development of yet more luxury flats and apartments in our inner cities which are out of reach of the vast majority of the local population?
Under the ‘spare room subsidy’, people in social housing with one spare bedroom will have their housing benefit cut by 14%, while those with two or more unoccupied rooms will see it slashed by 25%. Ministers say that the tax will encourage people to move to smaller properties and save around £480m a year from the spiralling housing benefit bill. Meanwhile the National Housing Federation says that as well as causing social disruption, the availability of suitable properties for people to move to is far less than the number of people ‘required’ to move.
The NHF says that while there are currently 180,000 households that are “under-occupying two-bedroom homes”, there are far fewer smaller properties in the social housing sector available to move into. Last year only 85,000 one-bedroom homes became available. The proposal will affect an estimated 660,000 working-age social tenants – 31% of existing working-age housing benefit claimants in the social sector. The majority of these people have only one extra bedroom…..
Meanwhile, the private sector becomes increasingly out of the reach of those on a low income….