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Posts posted by CrashConnoisseur

  1. It's you who needs to get a reality check. No, it's not "what everyone at 19, 20, 25, 30 years old wants". Moving away from parents and buying a house are completely different things. Which generation saw 20 year olds buying houses? :rolleyes:

    My generation. Back in the 1970s, 80s and 90s it was common at least in the northern city where I lived. A school friend bought a two-up -two-down terrace house and was married at 18 while an apprentice at BT. In the mid-1980s an 18 year old apprentice at the engineering company I worked for bought an end-terrace (dad was a buliding society branch manager so knew the importance of 'getting on the housing ladder'). The government even had a scheme to encourage young people to save for a deposit.

  2. Control immigration and don't give money to single mothers to spew out children, then with time demand will ease and thus will prices. It really is that simple.

    It isn't that simple. To control immigration the country would have to leave the EU and impose some form of work permit system similar to the Isle of Man. Single mothers in general don't "spew out children". Most would have been part of a couple when they had their children and statistically they are more likely to have just one child than women who remain in a couple.

  3. Even after squeezing out a hypothetical third child we would still be looking for £250 to make up the shortfall. I'm surprised, but we do live in a "nice" bit.

    Where can I find historical LHA data?

    For determining LHA rates the country is divided up into Broad Rental Market Areas (BRMAs) which straddle council boundaries. I'm not aware of any central online resource for historic LHA rates. However, several councils have the data available on their websites, in some cases going back to the national roll-out of LHA in April 2008.

    You may like to use a Google search to find this...


  4. LHA = £725.01 per month

    Current rent £745 per month

    So I'd be £20 out of pocket, but its a nice change from last year where the LHA was higher than my rent and therefore I could be outbid by someone not working.

    But, last year the HB claimant could keep the first £15 per week of any saving so had at least as much incentive* as you to look for and take the lower rent thus helping to keep rents down.

    * £20 a month is probably worth more to someone who's out of work.

  5. Used info from when I was renting in Guildford (GU1)

    Rent in shard flat was £600 pm

    LHA: 165 p/w (660 pm)

    So I would have had a surplus!

    By "shard flat" you were sharing a one bedroom flat with a partner?

    If you were sharing a two or more bedroom flat with other tenants then the applicabale LHA rate would be the £83 pw shared accommodation rate.

    In any case, you would not be awarded any more than your actual rent paid; so no surplus.

  6. A flaw in the poll...

    Yippee, a surplus, I'm quitting work and spending all my money tomorrow!

    Housing Benefit now only covers the actual rent if lower than the applicable LHA rate, so there's no longer any surplus payable (called Excess Payments). As a consequence there's no longer any incentive for existing HB claimants to look for or negotiate tenancies below the LHA rate.

  7. ...the crazy thing is that once repossessed, those with higher rates will have to go into private rented sector, where JSA will cover all their rent,...

    It's not JSA, but Housing Benefit that helps with paying rent and in many cases it will not cover all the rent. Even before the coalition's ill-considered cuts, 48% of Private Rental Sector recipients had to make up a shortfall.

    'House of Commons Written Answers 10 November 2010':


    Steve Webb: In August 2009, 48% of those receiving housing benefit under the local housing allowance arrangements had a shortfall in their rent caused by the customer's contractual rent being higher than the appropriate local housing allowance rate.
  8. I invited three people round to my house tonight. They were all stupid and I had a rubbish night. Just thought I'd let everyone know.

    You are David Dimblebore and I claim your second-home in Dartmouth (and £5).

  9. .....are people 'positioning' for working Universal Credits? Surely a part time job with UC seems the way to go? Am I way off the mark on this?

    The vast majority of people, politicians included, seem unaware of the implications of Universal Credit. Of those who are aware, the consensus is that UC will discourage many part-time workers, particularly the self-employed...

    'CAB Briefing: Universal Credit: an exploration and key questions' [January 2011]:


    Self-employed people starting up in business. The current system takes into account actual earnings. UC will deem people to earn the minimum wage even if they have been unable to take a wage out of the business during the starting up period.

    At present someone who starts up as self employed will be entitled to full WTC (as long as the work they are doing is seen to be in expectation of payment i.e. the business has to be reasonably viable)

    For example: a lone parent with one child - living in rented accommodation (£75 rent and £15 council tax) - who starts up in business and is unable during the first 6 months to take any earnings out of the business will be entitled to £253/wk from tax credits, HB/CTB and child benefit.

    Under UC they will have a personal allowance of £210.

    If she is working 40 hours/week she will be deemed to have an income of £237(min wage of £5.93 * 40)

    Earnings disregard of £40 = £237- £40 = £197

    65% of £197 = £128 to be taken from personal amount of UC

    Personal allowance of £210 - £128 = £82

    Total income will be £82 + child benefit £20 = £102 out of which she has to pay £75 rent and £15 council tax. Leaving her with £12 /week to pay for all food household expenses etc for her and her child

    Under the present system she would have £163/week

    This is clearly the difference between being able or not to set up in business.

    Many people will come into more than one of the above categories and so the reductions in income will be compounded – this could cause great difficulty for some people.

    'Tax warning for self-employed Cumbrians' [February 2011]:


    Self-employed Cumbrians face a tax bombshell hidden in the coalition Government's changes to the benefits system, a county finance expert has warned.

    Previously, couples with children who run their own businesses could top up their income with tax credits if their taxable profits fell below a certain level.

    But, under new rules in the Government's 'Universal Credit' system, those couples will be deemed automatically to earn the minimum wage, regardless of their real income.

    If they work a 40-hour week, that means the taxman would assume they earn a combined £24,669, dramatically reducing the amount of tax credits they can claim.

    'Welfare Reform Bill: Public Bill Committees, 29 March 2011, 6:00 pm':


    On a separate point, the assumption that anyone who is in self-employment will earn at least the minimum wage for all the hours that they work is an unrealistic assumption. The Low Incomes Tax Reform Group has made the point that the tax credit system works much better than that arrangement would for self-employed people. The tax credit system does not assume a minimum income. It is based on information about actual income. As the hon. Member for Cardiff Central has said, it is often in arrears, but at least it uses a realistic figure. It appears that that is not going to be in the universal credit. I am worried that that will discourage people from moving into self-employment at the exact time when that is the right thing for many people to do. I am concerned that this is one of a growing number of examples of incoherence in Government policy.

    Different Departments are pursuing policies without talking to each other very much, and they are ending up undermining each other as a result. Sometimes, as is the case here, that is happening between different parts of the same Department. Yesterday saw the launch of StartUp Britain, where the Prime Minister encouraged people to start up businesses and promoted entrepreneurship. Indeed, this Department has itself reintroduced the enterprise allowance, designed to encourage people to move into self-employment. However, through universal credit, the Department is also offering what the Low Incomes Tax Reform Group says is a much worse deal for the self-employed than that offered by the tax credit system. The fact that one bit of the Department is discouraging people from entering self-employment while another is encouraging them to do so means that there is, at the very least, a bit of incoherence and the potential for a serious mess.

    We need to get a proper grip on that area and to put in place a coherent policy for supporting self-employment. I hope that the Minister will be able to give us some indication of what the system for calculating universal credit for self-employed people will look like.

  10. Here's some advice from an experienced landlady...

    'No more boy tenants with long hair. Ever.':


    There is not a cat in hell's chance I am ever again renting a flat to a boy with long dark hair, who owns any type of musical instruments. Over the years you kind of get to know types, and how they will be, clean, fussy, easy going, annoying….

    Computer geeks are great, and never bother you, but have so much stuff the carpets get wrecked from boxes from internet gaming companies on the floor all the time. And they never use the oven, so its always spotless. Nurses cause lots of condensation from cleaning their uniforms, but are clean. Doctors are mucky. Irish girls have lots of lovely stuff and keep the flats in a lovely state. Etc.

    But boys with long hair and musical leanings. NEVER AGAIN. There have been 3 of them, all in different flats, over the years, and they have all been nightmares. The flats are always filthy, with long dark hairs stuck to everything from the ice in the freezer to the bathroom light, how is this possible? They must just never brush their hair. It's weird, because I've got girl tenants with flowing locks, and their flats aren't full of hair. Do these boys not own combs? Are they incapable of using a hoover?

    They do not know the meaning of the words 'tenants responsibility to clean the flat'. Of all the flats over the years, the two worst have been lived in and left by hairy musicians. I though the doctors were bad the other week, but this flat this week, the bloody bathroom has to be regrouted there is so much black mould. As we stood in the bathroom doorway on the inspection, and my jaw hit the floor at the state of it, the tenant said to me "I think there's a difference in our standards, it must be a boy girl thing." The toilet actually looked like it had a toupee, there were so many of his hairs stuck to it.

    Plus there are always money issues, in that they never have any, so the whole deposit issue is always that, a big issue. 2 of the 3 didn't get any deposit back at all, and I hate reducing deposits.

    So that is it. No more of them. They will be turned away at the door and can lay their guitar strummin leather clad moulty heads elsewhere.

    'And they were DOCTORS!!! do they not know about bacteria???':


    How in god's name are our hospitals expected to be clean when trainee doctors are happy to live in filth like this??!! 3 girls as well…. Dirty Gertys. You could catch MRSA from this bloody flat.

    You wanna be a landlord…. get used to seeing your properties in this state!

  11. Mine and many other peoples argument relies on one simple fact

    BTL can offset the interest part of their mortgage, owner occupiers cannot

    You're only looking at one side of the equation. The owner occupier also gets somewhere to live. That has an economic value - the imputed rent - which is tax free. The BTL landlord still has to fund their own accomodation elsewhere.

    The tax advantage is always with the owner occupier.

  12. FTB wants to buy a house they have a £500 a month IO mortgage. FTB needs to earn £750+ in an actual job to pay the mortgage because they pay tax on that income

    BTL wants to buy the same house with a £500 a month IO mortgage. BTL only needs to 'earn' £500 in rent to pay the mortgage because they offset the mortgage interest.

    The FTB no longer needs to rent an equivalent home from someone else so they also have their former rent money to bid with - tax free. The FTB always gets full tax relief on that imputed rent regardless of whether they have a mortgage to offset against it or not.

  13. Owner occupiers can also deduct mortgage interest from the income they receive from the property, except that whoops, there isn't any, because they don't pay tax on the benefit they get from owning the property so there's nothing to deduct it from. A level playing field would see owner occupiers paying income tax on the rent that they would be receiving if the property were rented out, and then deducting mortgage interest from that tax. They would thus pay more tax than they do at present, and not less.

    If you don't believe this, then work out the numbers for an example. Two people each own a house and live in it -- how much tax do they pay? Then the same two people rent their houses to each other instead -- how much tax do they pay? The tax paid will always be more in the second scenario, and therefore the tax system is biased in favour of owner-occupation, not against it.

    Exactly so.

    It's truly bizarre to see, on this of all forums, posters arguing that owning your own home and not having to pay rent to a landlord has no economic value.

  14. ...prob wasted more money implementing this than its saved.

    Almost certainly this ill-considered electioneering stunt will result in a larger benefits bill...

    'Why the benefit cap will COST £billions and not save a penny':


    The impact assessment says that [Housing Benefit] departments need to assess every person for all benefits in receipt and those not in receipt which could be claimed. Simply HB departments MUST have to assess every working HB claimant who is not in receipt of [Working Tax Credit] and [Child Tax Credit] for those benefits to see whether they are and whether they then become exempt from the overall benefit cap.

    With 75% of new HB claimants working and eligible to claim HB a very high proportion of these will be eligible for WTC and CTC. If just 3.5% of them are eligible for WTC and/or CTC and are currently not claiming those benefits then the increase in WTC/CTC will be £292million and that will wipe out any of the savings the cap is said to produce.

    Given that the [Non Take Up Rate] is in the range of 11.4% to 19.47% it’s a given that more than 3.5% of those working and claiming HB will be eligible but not in receipt of WTC and/or CTC. This means that the benefit cap won’t produce any saving whatsoever.

  15. Benefits letters to arrive soon.


    i hope me and the wife get one saying we can claim 26K for doing nothing,

    If so, then you would most likely get even more if you were working...

    'The real comparisons for capping' [February 2012]:


    The pro-cap speakers in Parliament have consistently focused on one argument, why should people out of work be better off than those in work in the same situation?

    Although others have tried to point out that those in work also get benefits to support them, the point has not seemed to be grasped. I thought it was worth (even now) putting some figures into the argument so I’ve put some simple comparisons into our Future Benefits Model (FFBM) and the results are below.


    there are no circumstances where the out of work family has an income less than about £100 a week lower than the working family and with Universal Credit it may be more than £500 a week lower because of the cap.

    It is curious that the family on average earnings may easily receive more in benefits than in net earnings when that seems to have been the justification for capping those out of work.

  16. I have right to Acquire, lifetime security of tenure and should not face the lha changes, as far as I know.

    Yes, that's correct. It's social tenants with a spare bedroom (that means more than one bedroom for a single person) who will face a deduction if they claim HB. The LHA system and rates have no relevance here.

    'Bedroom tax calculator':


  17. Some H/A rental contracts are "council house" style contracts and some are AST style contracts.

    If your on an AST style contract then when your next annual review comes up you'll swap to LHA and only be eligible for the room rate.

    Although new Flexible Tenancies (where offered) are time limited they are not "AST style contracts". Nor will they "swap to LHA". For Housing Benefit claims Flexible Tenancies will be treated the same as any other tenancy with a social landlord (Council or Housing Association).

  18. It would be a problem in Kirklees too if you are under 35 and in social housing. The single room rate is £55.00 per week. Typical social rents are £60-65.00. That is a lot to find if you are unemployed and intend to live independly.

    Again, the under-35 restriction only applies to LHA claims in the private sector.

  19. The prices in the original item start with "Weekly LHA rate for May 2012 Central Greater Manchester BRMA"

    That's the OP's text and not applicable to the social tenancies under discussion. The linked 'Bedroom Tax Calculator' makes no mention of LHA rates.

    If you are under 35 you'll only be entitled to shared house room rate now.

    Only if renting from a private landlord (some exemptions apply).

    I don't know if that applies to H/A properties. (It may even depend on the wording of you H/A contact!) If it doesn't I imagine it will soon.

    It doesn't, regardless of the wording of the tenancy.

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