Housing Benefit

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 6th November 2018.

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Photo of Karen Buck Karen Buck Labour, Westminster North

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average shortfall is between housing benefit and the rent of people affected by the benefit cap who are in receipt of (a) jobseekers allowance, (b) employment support allowance, (c) income support and (d) another benefit.

Photo of Justin Tomlinson Justin Tomlinson The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The information in the table shows average shortfall between housing benefit and the contractual rent of people affected by the benefit cap in May 2018.

Main Benefit

Average Shortfall

a) Jobseeker's Allowance

£ 64.38

b) Employment Support Allowance

£ 61.53

c) Income Support

£ 59.48

d) Other

£ 78.57

We acknowledge there could be a potential rental shortfall due to various Welfare Reforms, for example:

  • the Benefit Cap;
  • Removal of the Spare Room Subsidy (RSRS) in the social rented sector;
  • Changes to Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates, including the 4 year freeze.

These figures don’t isolate which deductions a benefit cap claimant has applied to their Housing Benefit. It should be noted however DHPs can be used by local authorities to mitigate rental shortfalls faced by claimants.

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