The truth about the bedroom tax. It costs the taxpayer MORE

We ALL knew the Bedroom Tax would create a greater cost for the taxpayer – at least, those of us with any forewarning knew that this would be the case.
The Conservative-led government (including the Tory Democrats who prop it up) was told that the cost would be greater and ignored the warning.
My impression was that they wanted it to cost more, as part of their overarching “starve the beast” policy to make public services unsustainable.

20 thoughts on “The truth about the bedroom tax. It costs the taxpayer MORE

  1. Hayfords

    The cut in bedroom subsidy (not tax) is not as simple as saving money. There is a shortage of larger properties with more bedrooms. The idea is that people will migrate to properties more suitable for their needs and free up bigger accommodation. In the long term it will save money and will be seen as the excellent policy that it is.

    1. Mike Sivier

      When was this so-called bedroom subsidy introduced? In what legislation?
      (I’ll give you a clue – there never was a bedroom subsidy).
      The state under-occupation charge is a tax because it is a compulsory contribution to state revenue, levied by the government against property used by a citizen, to support government policies.
      There may still be a shortage of larger properties with more bedrooms available from social landlords and councils, but there is now also a shortage of larger families willing to move into them – because they fear (rightly) that the bedroom tax will force them out if their situation changes.
      Therefore we can see that the idea you put forward is fatally flawed. Not only is this execrable policy forcing people to rent from private landlords at higher cost to the taxpayer, but the larger homes are going empty.
      Now, what do you think will happen to those homes? Will their owners allow them to go empty for long? Or are they more likely to sell them off for redevelopment into luxury housing for the very rich?
      It seems to me that this has been the aim from the start – to clear poor people out and turn the accommodation into a cash cow.

  2. Hayfords

    It is not a tax. It is a reduction in benefit. In other words you don’t receive payment for accommodation that you don’t need and are stopping someone else more needful using.

    1. Mike Sivier

      Read my last comment again until you understand.
      We’ve all heard, or read, the silliness you just spouted before and don’t need to see it again. The reason it is wrong is simply that many people were put in that accommodation because it was all that was available at the time. They did not choose to have the extra space; it was either that or the street. Now they are being penalised for it. They would have been in more suitable accommodation if it had been built but – here’s the sly bit – the last Conservative government sold off all the decent council housing and denied local authorities the cash to build replacements.
      As for the part about stopping someone else in more need from using it…
      Read my last comment again until you understand.

  3. Hayfords

    This not the case. Many of the properties are where there were children who have left home. Their parents continue to hold on to properties that are far too large for social housing.

    1. laura

      Tax or not, it’s costing more to send out letters to scare people into paying, court costs and in some cases evictions. There are streets of houses lying empty, so why aren’t they being made up to standard if there is such a shortage of housing? I’ll tell you why – so councils can sell them for £1 and those that buy them can make a bomb load of cash. It’s all about money, not about helping people. I’ve read story after story about how people who needed bigger homes finally got them, only to be hit with bedroom tax. For example, a blind lady lived in a 1 bed house but they wouldn’t let her keep a guide dog in it so they moved her to a 2 bed house. The bedroom tax kicks in and she has to pay it. Now the bedroom tax was and still is put to us this way: “It’s there to help those that need bigger properties to get them.” Well, that lady and many like her need them but still get treated unfairly. It’s a disgrace and not thought out at all, and it’s putting more people in need then it’s helping. And it’s costing more than it saves.

      1. Mike Sivier

        I think it has been thought out. I think it’s doing exactly what the Conservatives want it to do, with precisely the results that you have (accurately) described.

      2. laura

        OK Mike, I will rephrase that. It’s been thought out in terms of “f*** the people who have to live and deal with it, I’m OK, I dont care.” But at the end of the day it’s killing people and needs to be stopped.

  4. Hayfords

    Don’t forget that the last Labour government did not build social housing. It is interesting to note that the last Labour government did not repeal any legislation passed by the previous government. They would like to have introduced the same legislation including the union curbs but were far to scared to do it. The current Labour is in favour of benefit caps and the public are 70% in favour of the current government’s benefit cuts including the cuts in benefits for people with too many bedrooms. You are on the wrong side of history.

    1. Mike Sivier

      Don’t try to change the subject to the last Labour government. The last Labour government didn’t bring in the bedroom tax. The current Tory-led coalition brought it in, knowing there was a lack of social housing into which people could be moved.
      You are on the wrong side of morality.

  5. dizzyduck

    Many of the people being hit by this are disabled people, who maybe have properties that have been majorly adapted to meet their needs to live as independently as possible, or who have extra needs for space either for equipment or for maybe a partner to sleep in a different room because of medical needs. Downsizing isn’t an option for most, and even if it is, there is a serious lack of adapted properties, and funds to adapt which is especially mad when there is a property already adapted to meet that person’s needs, and it takes ages to get adaptations through anyhow. I appreciate it’s difficult if you’ve never been seriously disabled to get anywhere near understanding what that’s like, or what the system is like, but please try to imagine, and don’t swallow all of the “spin”. This is a bad policy!

  6. Hayfords

    What you mean is that only a handful are occupied by disabled people, but the left wing press use them to make silly political points.

    1. Mike Sivier

      Don’t try to tell me what I mean.
      Tell us what you think, if you have any thoughts of your own that don’t come from Conservative Central HQ.
      Are you saying you think only a handful of social housing has been occupied by disabled people who have been forced to move because of the – guess what I’m going to call it – BEDROOM TAX?
      Then think again. Thousands have been affected because your glorious leader Don’t-Call-Me-I’m-On-Holiday-Dave lied to Parliament when he said they were exempt.
      Statistics are available from independent organisations who have had to work with those affected. You should probably start with the Citizens Advice Bureau.
      Or would you rather just snuggle up with your comfortable lies?

  7. Proud CHD mummy ♡♥♡ (@Sheppey_mamma)

    omg hayfords- I had to really stop myself from laughing at your comments- I am currently imagining you as a human ostrich, as your head is currently buried far down in the sand or maybe as a parrot- parroting the complete tripe and spin that the tory government spew out. are you honestly that daft? 2 thirds of those hit by bedroom tax are disabled- not a handful! Around 100,000 households live in properties adapted for their needs -if these disabled people in adapted properties moved into smaller homes this could also cost the taxpayer millions more in costly home adaptations- then you’ve got to think about where they’d put their equipment if the previous spare room was for that- or if they needed 24 hour care where would their carer sleep? even if the 660,000 households affected by the bedroom tax were just people with extra rooms for no reason, and If everyone affected did decide to move, many would have to go into the more expensive private rented sector, which would mean in quite a few cases housing benefit claims could actually increase. and what about single parents who share custody? or families whose children serve in our armies or go to uni but still use their bedrooms? how about the fact that the united nations ruled that the bedroom tax breeched human rights. or maybe the fact that so hundreds of people were found to have been charged bedroom tax illegally that it actually cost a lot more then the tax would save as they were due full compensation, including an element for distress and enforced hardship, possibly including consequences to health. or maybe the fact that the tax has driven hundreds of people to food banks, to homelessness and suicide might make you open your eyes a bit more. or like mike said would you rather just snuggle up with your comfortable lies?

  8. Hayfords

    I suppose you know that the reduction in housing benefit for spare bedrooms was brought in by the last Labour government. It applied to private housing. The fuss created by people with a political agenda, started when the government applied Labour’s policy to public housing.

    1. Mike Sivier

      Are you unaware that there is a huge difference between privately-rented housing and social accommodation? People get to choose privately-rented housing for themselves, therefore having extra rooms is their choice and they should not expect the public purse to pay for them. Social housing is allocated to people who get what is available at the time they need it. This is why some people have been given accommodation that is larger than their particular needs in the past. This was not their choice but now the government is penalising them for it – a government composed of the same political party that stopped the building of social accommodation in the first place (otherwise there might be enough to go around). Also victimised are people who need the extra rooms, such as the many, many disabled people you don’t believe exist, who need the space for the adaptations that make their lives bearable. Moving these people involves huge expense, eliminating any possible saving.
      You are right only that a fuss created by people with a political agenda began when the current government brought in the Bedroom Tax. Those people were Conservatives, and the political agenda was Tory.

  9. Hayfords

    If there is shortage of social housing then why did the last Labour fail to build any in 13 years? Disabled people also live in private housing but it did not stop Labour from cutting their housing benefit. People’s circumstances change just as much in private housing as social housing. Their children leave home and they end up with several spare rooms in the same way, but somehow it is politically correct to only penalise the private tenants.

    1. Mike Sivier

      How do you know Labour cut the housing benefit of disabled people in private accommodation? Nothing is ever said about such a thing.
      Private tenants have chosen to live in their current accommodation – social tenants are placed there. That is the difference you keep missing.
      As for Labour not building social housing – you are aware of the mess the Conservatives left when they were finally booted out of office in 1997, aren’t you? They had starved the public finances to the point where it was not immediately possible to start building social housing again – Labour had to start by fixing the health service and schools, and were only partway through that (due to a disastrous dalliance with neoliberal politics) by 2010.
      There has been enough (nonsense) talk about Labour spending too much while in power as it is. Imagine the whoops of indignation if the party had borrowed money to build social housing!
      You Tories really are silly. As I mentioned in my food bank article yesterday evening, you create a situation and then try to blame your opponents for what you’ve done. Silly, silly people.

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