Council offers ‘rent holiday’ to tenants that downsize
An Essex Council has decided to offer under-occupying tenants a ‘rent holiday’ if they move to smaller properties, in an attempt to alleviate the impact of the Bedroom Tax.
Under new rules due to come in from next April working age social housing tenants will have their Housing Benefit cut if they are deemed to be under-occupying their property – by 14% for 1 spare bedroom and 25% for 2 spare bedrooms.
Thurrock Council agreed the move as part of its allocations policy last week, whereby tenants that can qualify must have been a resident in the area for 5 years or more to be eligible to go onto the housing waiting list.
Anti-social behaviour, domestic abuse and violence against either sex can also prevent people going onto the Thurrock housing list, or may even mean that they are thrown off it.
Val Morris-Cook, portfolio holder for housing, said 900 of the council’s tenants have one spare room, and 400 have two spare rooms.
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