In 2012 the UK Government introduced some major changes to the benefits system. These changes have impacted on many of our residents, leaving a lot of people worse off.

Under-occupation - the 'bedroom tax'

The most well-known change to come in as a result of welfare reform is known as the ‘bedroom tax’.

The Government changed the rules on Housing Benefit. The changes affect everyone who is under pension age and living in housing association homes.

Under the changes, the amount of housing benefit you receive is now based on the number of bedrooms the Government considers your family needs. If you have one or more spare bedrooms your Housing Benefit is likely to be reduced.

You are entitled to one bedroom for:

  • each couple
  • each adult (aged 16 years and over)
  • 2 children of the same gender under 16 years old
  • 2 children of different genders under 10 years old

Use our bedroom calculator to check how many bedrooms the Government thinks you need.

How we can help

If you have been affected by the ‘Bedroom Tax’ or any other aspect of welfare reform, we are on hand to help.

For support and advice on any aspect of welfare reform, you can visit our welfare reform drop-in session every Monday at the Cestria Hub from 9am to 4.30pm. You can also contact the Financial Inclusion Team on 0191 385 1407, 07919044314 or email advice@moneyworks.org.uk

Financial support is available for some residents who are struggling to cover the cost of their home due to the change in rules.

This support is called discretionary housing payment. Anyone applying will need to have an assessment of their finances. If you think you may be eligible for discretionary housing payment just get in touch.

Find out more

More information on welfare reform can be found on the DWP Welfare Reform website.

DWP Welfare Reform

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