Confusion over the Bedroom Tax

There appears to be some confusion over a possible rethink of the Bedroom Tax. It seems that Iain Duncan Smith has told BBC News home editor one thing, while his department SPADs are claiming another. It shows just how bad things are in government. It seems to be chaos, with policies announced on the fly and ministers and departments contradicting each other.


BBC News: ‘Bedroom tax’ rules re-examined

What is the bedroom tax?

Iain Duncan Smith: “There is no bedroom tax”

Author: Latentexistence

The world is broken and I can't fix it because I am broken. I can, however, rant about it all and this is where I do that when I can get my thoughts together. Most of the time you'll find my words on Twitter rather than here though. I sometimes write for Where's The Benefit too.

32 thoughts on “Confusion over the Bedroom Tax”

  1. plenty of working families are taking in lodgers for extra income why should those who dont work and just sit around all day have bedrooms going spare that could be used. If you dont like it MOVE or get a lodger. Frankly £14 is a pittance make it much more than that and give it some purpose.

    1. £14 is a pittance? What a fucking ignorant statement. £14 is food, electricity, clothes. £14 is all the difference when someone lives on rent + £71 per week. There are hundreds of thousands of people who already don’t have enough to get by.

    2. Also, if you ever use the phrase “sit around all day” to describe unemployed or sick or disabled people again, I will permanently re-block you from commenting on this blog.

      1. Get a lodger in you will get more than £14 per week and be able to split bills etc. There is no excuse for leaving a room empty that someone could use. If you not keen on the idea then either pay the money or move. Simple as.

          1. What do you suggest then?! Other than not having it which isnt an option as its coming like it or not.

          2. The bedroom tax might be coming, but it will be this government’s poll tax.
            There aren’t enough one bedroom homes for even a fraction of the people who need it.
            A vast number of those “spare” rooms ARE being used. They are being used by couples who can’t share a room because of medical equipment, because of specialist beds, because of noisy machinery, and a hundred other disability related reasons.
            A whole load of those spare rooms are in homes that have been adapted for a disabled person at a cost of tens of thousands of pounds. You would have them move out and do without those adaptions or have a smaller home adapted at a similar expense.
            Many of those “spare” rooms belong to people who are away at university for 39 weeks of the year or are fighting in Afghanistan and other places. Do you throw the lodger out when they come home? And then get them back again a few weeks later?
            “Get a lodger in” you say. Right. A lodger whose background you don’t know, sharing a house with you and your children. Is that safe? Is that even allowed by the rental contract?

          3. Plenty of working families have lodgers for extra income. So its safe for them to do so but not for those on benefit? Nah. Plenty of agencies reference and background check lodgers so that excuse wont wash. End of the day, make the adjustments or pay £14 we all have to make sacrifices.

          4. 39 weeks at uni lots of rental agreements are 6 months or far less so that doesnt preclude you from getting a lodger.
            End of the day working families have their kids share bedrooms they dont have spare rooms. All the issues you describe could apply to working families also but because they do they are not allowed the same discretion? This idea of ‘extra entitlement’ for those on benefit isnt working and its the reason all the welfare reform is so easily getting through Parliament without any issues.

          5. Welfare reform are not being put through without issues. They were rejected by the house of Lords and CaMoron had to sneakly use a loophole to get them through.

          6. Precisely. Also students are only at university for 30 weeks in theory – so at home for 22 weeks perhaps. School children do 39 weeks at school. Perhaps their rooms could be used as offices in the daytime?

        1. Just to point out, most tenancy agreements forbid subletting. Especially social/council housing. So are you suggesting that people should break the law? If they get found out they will be evicted because the broke their tenancy agreement.

  2. also a lot of hard working families will be perplexed as to how someone on benefits gets a top of the range smartphone on contract and then claims benefits are meager? maybe the credit checking companies know benefits are a winner and guaranteed income hence that is why you pass the check instantly!
    a real kick in the teeth for those that work damn hard and can only dream of getting a smartphone on a contract 🙁

    1. Not that it’s any of your business, but I am not on job seeker’s allowance, I am on sickness and disability benefits. I’m unlikely ever to be able to work again and I don’t have the choice to work to get a reasonable standard of living.

      I can get a top of the range smartphone on contract because I passed a credit check. I have just the right amount of debt for the banks to like me because it’s been ten years since illness forced me to file for bankruptcy. I can pay for that contract because I don’t smoke and I prioritise my money for technology because that’s what I’m interested in. I will also point out that when a sick person is stuck in bed a large chunk of the time it gets boring and lonely and a smartphone helps quite a lot. How do you think I tweet so much?

      In any case, if you really think that I shouldn’t have the chance at a reasonable standard of living, then fuck you.

      1. heres what working people think : that you have the right to live any standard of life you choose but NOT at someone else expense. why do you think the US is the no.1 economy? Because money is not given gratis to spend on smartphones and contracts.

        IDS is right. When working people cant afford smartphones why should someone who doesnt be able to? By being able to afford such a thing you yourself have divulged how lucrative sickness benefits are which results in the epidemic rise of people being ‘on the sick’ despite huge advances in medical technology.

        1. Do you know what those huge advances in medical technology do? They let people survive. And the people who survive need help to live.

          Working people can claim benefits too. Millions do. Many working people DO have smartphones. If I could work I would bring in far more money than I get to support me right now. I used to be director of an IT company. My wife has given up work to look after me (saving the state thousands in care fees) and she could be earning a reasonable wage as a teacher. Do you honestly think we would choose this situation for ourselves? Sickness benefits are NOT lucrative. A full third of disabled people live in poverty. I happen to be able to afford a phone contract by prioritising because it is important to me.

          And as for this being at someone elses expense – why did I pay national insurance when I was working then? I paid into the system, and the system pays out to support me when I need it. You had better hope you never need to rely on the same.

          1. The loss of the AAA rating for the UK economy will spell the end of the welfare state and the NHS.
            The welfare state was never designed for someone to have 11 kids and a horse then end up living in a mansion gratis. Bear in mind this person never worked so the idea you have to contribute first is hogwash.

            It was never designed to be a system where you could go on benefit straight from school and be on it till you hit pensionable age but that is what a million of people have done according to the Taxpayers alliance.

            With hospitals being closed faster than ever before I dont see the NHS lasting much longer either!

          2. Obviously a reader of the Scum or the Daily Fail, stop believing the manure you are being fed and open your mind.

        2. What economic reports have yoy been reading, The Chinese over took the sceptics about a year ago. Twat

    2. Dear Dan 50 ,I worked for thirty years never making anywhwere near the average wage,humility forbids me to suggest I was ever “a hard working tax payer”-that is a self defined conceit in my opinion.I relinquished my employment for,in my eyes far more important priority to help my wife when she became disabled-this resulted in a 70% decrease in income.Seriously,if you cannot afford things that people with far less can some budgeting advice may be adviseable.The kick in the teeth results when you become ill/disabled and or have/ caring responsibilities and arrange activity at the lowest cost to the State-given any of the alternatives and receive some return for the contribution you have and/or are still making and the resentment that people who are in some strange way jealous of them vomitting/being in constant pain/being on dialysis etc.Perhaps be glad of good health rather than jealous of the ownership of a smartphone etc.

    3. I am on benefits and can’t pass for any loan apart from an emergency loan from the DWP! As said above don’t believe what you read in the papers!

  3. My god haven’t some of the media done a good job on some people? Want to change your lifestyle for mine? Ah but you don’t know me do you so how could you possibly choose? Exactly! Take your head out of the cheap daily rags and do a bit of honest research before leaving comments eh?

  4. Do people with life insurance policies complain that their premiums are paying for the payouts that beneficiaries receive when someone else dies? As far as I can see, the only difference with National Insurance is that it is mandatory if you are earning a wage. It is required by law as decreed by Parliament as our representatives. This is what National Insurance is for. Dan 50, you don’t even know what you’re complaining about.

    A lot of sick people need a spare room, either for a carer to stay in or for equipment. Some people thrash around in their sleep and it is not safe for a partner to share a bed. Expecting a couple to share a bed room is frankly an invasion of privacy. It is none of the government’s business. How many elderly couples still sleep in the same bed? My grandparents never did since I knew them.

    1. Ok then pay your own rent then dont use benefit. I dont think the public would give a hoot what you do in your own house as long as its you that paid for it.

      1. I own my house and I and my wife both work. We have no problem with our national insurance contributions helping sick people to live with some dignity.

  5. Fact: welfare costs too much this country is skint and cant afford to pay for your smartphone anymore.
    More working taxpayers are leaving the UK than ever before because they want their hard earned money to support them not others. When all taxpayers leave the UK who will pay for your smartphone then?

    Taxpayers alliance say 1 million have never worked in the UK so this idea that people dont want to be on welfare is a joke. If welfare pays more than work then who is going to bother working and clearly a good chunk of population have taken that option instead!

    1. Please outline a situation/circumstance where you are better off not working.Majority of social security goes on pensioners and in actual fact has reduced for those of working age with 5% going to the unemployed.Sickness benefits and DLA has saved the Country many billions,the latter was introduced as a cost saving /independence enhancing policy.TPA uses dodgy statistics-I was classed as not working(receipt of IS)as many others despite the fact that I was working,households for benefit purposes change all the time,if i got divorced that would result in two people that have never worked.-despite a combined work history of over 50 years.

  6. hey mate you should listen to radio 5 from this morning where plenty of working families rang up irate about those living in social housing and then whining it isnt big enough for them. why have 5 kids if you cant afford them? Social housing is subsidised by those that work and is not a right. If you only got a 2 bed house why have 5 kids then expect a bigger house?! This country is bankrupt and with this attitude of laze will become 3rd world soon if not already.

    Most supported the bedroom penalty ironically on the show even the ones who have never heard of birth control!

    If you think that everyone has the right to a free house, pocket money, kids, free sky, car etc all at someone elses expense then fuck you.

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