The government have accused Labour of scaremongering over the so called bedroom tax, I say so called as it isn’t actually a tax, more a clawback of benefits to do with under occupancy (as the government see it)

Problem being, Labour don’t actually have to do much in the way of scaremongering as anyone who has come into contact with the benefits system will tell you…


The Work and Pensions Secretary has attacked Labour for scaremongering with claims of a new “bedroom tax” on social housing tenants.
Under Government welfare reforms that will take effect in April, tenants in council houses and social housing will have their housing benefit reduced if they have empty rooms in their homes.
Ministers say the “under occupancy penalty” is intended to ensure that the best use is made of social housing and reduce the housing benefit bill, currently more than £20 billion a year.
The DWP estimates that the change will save taxpayers £480 million a year and affect around 600,000 people. The average loss for a single empty bedroom will be £14 per week, the department says.

Thing is, it doesn’t just affect those in social housing, it affects anyone paying rent or receiving council tax benefits including those who own their own property yet have become unemployed. As for the average loss, well that’s just an average, the clawback will be 14% for a single room and 25% for two or more. The government hope it will make people consider downgrading into properties with fewer rooms thus freeing up under occupied houses for those with families where there’s a shortage. It’s one of the consequences of mass immigration and the selling off of social housing in the Thatcher years without building anything to replace the sold off stock. What it means is there are simply not enough houses to go around, well houses for growing families that is. So what will happen is that anyone who hasn’t got enough income will be forced to move out to something smaller, possibly to somewhere they don’t want to be and the place they considered their home (not just a house) that they’ve cared for will go to someone else, possibly more deserving, possibly not.

I can’t think of a better plan to lose votes assuming those losing their homes choose to vote, other than forced evictions that is.

Thing is, for all Labour are making a fuss over this can anyone see them rescinding it? I have my doubts as whatever comes in tends to remain, it just gets replaced, not axed.

What we need is to stop mass immigration and start a program of social housing building. Sadly that’s not going to happen, well, not any time soon, the government would far rather waste our money on foreign aid, foreign wars, subsidising bird mincers and keeping ministers and civil servants in gold plated pensions.

It strikes me that who ever gets in, they all have their priorities totally wrong. We need a better system of checks and balances (referism) to stop governments both national and local from simply wasting taxpayers money and we need it to force them to do what we want them to do rather than the idiocy that is party policy and dogma.

Politicians are meant to represent us, not their party and not some failed economic or social dogma.

Until that happens, this is what we end up with, attempted savings in all the wrong areas…

5 comments for “Scaremongering

  1. Mudplugger
    March 7, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    I suspect the Tories are not too worried about potential vote-losses from this demographic, hence that is not an issue here.

    The basic objective of seeking to balance limited social housing-stock with the scale of need has some merit, but the implementation has been as cack-handed as ever.
    What they should have done was to apply the ‘benefit reduction’ only to those who had been offered and refused an alternative, smaller, property. That would have recognised any issues of local supply of smaller properties and defused the whole argument.

    One key problem with building any more housing is that, whether mansions or council flats, as the food-chain unravels, at the entry-level there is an additional Housing Benefit claimant in almost every case. If government wanted to cut this benefit bill, then building any more houses is ultimately a very negative way to go about it.

    • Nick
      March 7, 2013 at 6:33 pm

      The economics of it aside (rare for me as I’ve bashed the lefties all day on the Telegraph over this) it simply isn’t really fair to push people out fo their homes simply because they’ve too much space.

      I honestly do not understand why social housing exists at all. The idea of the government giving people a home for life is absurd. If a family cannot afford to live in an area then they can’t afford to live there. The market should then force down house prices but it can’t – won’t – while the state is able to pay any price going.

      Then there are those paid housing benefit yet in jobs. The amount of paperwork involved to make that work is simply waste. Why is the state not simply taking less from people in the damned first place? Why is anyone earning less than £12,000 a year paying any tax at all?

      The government is completely back to front. I agree with the above: the problem isn’t supply, it’s demand and a broken market. Something’s got to give and it needs to be the arrogance of the political class.

  2. Here in the provinces
    March 7, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    Sorry, but bollocks. The idea that the housing stock wasn’t replaced may be a fair point in itself, but linking the shortage with immigration is not useful here. A lot of immigrant families have lots of kids and fetch over dependent relatives so the change in society since the Thatcher years couldn’t be anticipated. Few council houses would have had sufficient room for this under any build and not many councils in any event were willing to build large properties, even if what they built was supposedly to a higher standard.

    The housing situation has been hit by tens of thousands turning up to see what they can get free. Guess what, they get houses free and then complain they aren’t big enough.

    Entry level homes are needed, true, and when built may be okay for the natives but few entry level homes are big enough for large, well established and often three generation families. Near me the number of houses with extensions and expanded roof space with lots of windows is telling as they are almost entirely owned or occupied by immigrant families.

    No one anticipated the result of Labour’s mass immigration policy and housing is just one of the many things to suffer.

    • March 8, 2013 at 11:17 am

      If we didn’t have uncontrolled mass immigration and if those immigrants didn’t have such large families and invited over the relatives the chances are I wouldn’t have written the post. As it is, the consequences of mass immigration are slowly turning this country inside out. This is one of those consequences.

  3. Valentine Gray
    March 8, 2013 at 10:12 am

    You dont get it do you, it is a ploy to allow the new wave (tsunami) of Bulgarian and Romanian immigrants who will be in the main Roma Gipsies to move into council estates, a true heaven for people whose living standards are lower than third world, social engineering at its worst Common Purpose Cameron is a Traitor.

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