John Paul from Castledene comments on yesterdays news story – more than 750,000 people face homelessness under the governments decision to cap housing benefits.

I noticed this news item yesterday and I asked John Paul from the Castledene Group to comment.

“The recent budget cuts will undoubtedly have an effect on the amount of people made homeless. By capping the benefit people can receive, some landlords will only take professional people thus making the homeless situation worse. At the end of the day, landlords are in this game to make money, it’s a business and not a charity, so by capping benefits, the government is forcing the hand of many investors.

Another change in the HB system that hasn’t been thought through is to reduce peoples HB if they are on job seekers for more than 12 months. It currently stands that if you are on job seekers for 12 months, your housing benefit will be cut by 10% in month 13. This will only give rise to landlords asking for high top ups from tenants or simply evicting tenants adding further to the homeless problems. Im all for getting people back into work but feel that the carrot should be better than the stick”.

More than 750,000 people face homelessness under the governments decision to cap housing benefits.
This is according to the National Housing Federation, which has estimated in London alone, around 425,000 people could lose their home.

Housing minister Grant Shapps announced last month that households can only now only claim a third of the average market rent of an area.

Rental rates in London are so high that many families could be forced to leave the area in search of work or struggle and fall into arrears.

The organisation has claimed that the rates of homelessness could be the highest in over 30 years.

It has called on the government to create a poverty commission to assess the impact of the cuts on the poorest in the country.

David Orr, chief executive of the Federation, said: “For many people, particularly those with disabilities, moving could be an enormous upheaval. It will also disrupt the education of thousands of children.

“The resulting impact on peoples lives would be huge  as would the cost to the taxpayer.”

He added that councils could face huge costs from temporarily re-housing families while others would be unable to support homeless families.

Posted by Luella Ravelin