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Local Housing Allowance Consultation Announced


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The DWP has opened a consultation on proposed changes to Local Housing Allowance which would remove the 15 pounds a week that tenants could keep if their rent was lower than the defined LHA for the area. On the surface, that would seem to make sense, but the whole point of LHA was to provide tenants with an incentive to find cheaper housing if they could keep a portion of the difference between their rent and the LHA for the area. If they're taking away that incentive, then what was the point of rolling out this program? Not to mention that LHA has doubled the allowance for certain types of houses in some areas and it has eliminated the role of local rent officers making sure that rental agreements were appropriate. Now there is no incentive for self-regulation, there's no supervision because the role of rent officers has been eliminated, and the amount of money at stake has been increased. That's a recipe for disaster.

James Purnell promised several times at the end of last year that their would be a general consultation on the impact of LHA in the new year, but now that he's buggered off after delaying and delaying with that promise, it looks like this might be the only opportunity to provide official feedback on the program.

The introduction of LHA doubled the amount of benefit for larger houses in my area, and my rent is now the same for LHA in the area (i.e. so much for asking my landlord to reduce my rent as he could easily find a family on benefits to move in). One-half of the council tax collected in my area also goes into paying LHA, so it's all rather galling that I have the threat of eviction hanging over my head with the possibility of seeing someone use my taxes to take over the house I'd like to stay in.

Inflating LHA is New Labour's last great hope for keeping the BTL bubble afloat. Anyone have any ideas for what to include in a consultation response or want to submit something themselves?

Here's a link to details on the consultation:

http://www.dwp.gov.uk/consultations/2009/l...tation-0609.pdf

Responses are supposed to be sent to: ron.butler@dwp.gsi.gov.uk

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LHA hasn't helped us one inch. If you're unemployed around here, you inevitably become homeless. Simple as. The rules for claiming HB\LHA make it virtually impossible to get a landlord to agree to it. They see professionals as a better option, despite the possibility they may lose their job during the tenancy...

Don't start me on the rates, £85 a week max for under-25s *still* despite the inflated rents.

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LHA is a disaster witing to happen.

The catch is, as with hosing benefit, as the number of poeple working drops, less people have to pay council tax and more can claim LHA.

Eventually ou will hit a point (very soon in fact) where LHA and pension topups will use the entire council budget and the council will go bust.

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  • 420 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
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      • Even
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      • up 5%



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