Big changes from April 2013 mean that you may get less
benefits than before.
If you rent and have too many bedrooms for the size of your family you may lose up to 25% of your housing benefit.
Under the new government rules you're entitled to 1 bedroom for:
Each adult couple Any other person aged 16 or over 2 children of the same sex under the age of 16 2 children under the age of 10 regardless of their sex Any other child An overnight carer (who does not normally live with you).
You're also allowed an extra room if:
You've fostered a child or become an approved foster carer in the last 12 months You have adult children in the armed forces (as long as they intend to return) You have severly disabled children who are unable to share.
The bedroom tax will apply if:
The bedroom tax does not apply if:
OK. I have a spare bedroom. How will it affect me?
If you have 1 spare bedroom your housing benefit will be cut by 14% of the rent you pay every week. If you have 2 or more spare bedrooms you'll lose 25%.
Give me an example
If you get £70 per week in housing benefit - and have 1 spare bedroom - your benefit will be cut by 14%. This means you'll end up with £60.20.
These new rules apply from April 2013 - so now's the time to get help and support. Call us:
The government is combining separate benefits into 1 single payment called universal credit. It replaces every other benefit including:
What does it mean to me?
All your benefits will be paid in 1 single payment to your household. This will include your housing benefit - even if you've had it paid directly to us in the past. The roll-out of universal credit has already started in parts of the northwest.
To make sure you're prepared for the change you should:
Get a bank account Set-up a direct debit to pay your rent. Get some advice on how to budget on a monthly basis.
We can help you with all of this
Call us for free, confidential advice:
The overall amount of benefit you can receive will be capped from April 2013.The government will add up how much money you get from benefits including: housing benefit, jobseeker’s allowance, income support, employment support allowance, child benefit, child tax credit and carer’s allowance.If the total comes to more than the maximum amount allowed your housing benefit payments will be reduced.
What's the maximum amount of benefit I can claim?
This will not apply if:
What should I do?Make sure you're claiming all the benefits you can. Call us for expert advice.
The Department of Work and Pensions has created a series of guides to help you with the change to universal credit.
These guides are in PDF format. You probably have a PDF reader on your computer, but if you don't, you can download one here. All guides open in a new browser window.