Local Housing Allowance: Uprating

Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 7th December 2022.

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Photo of Hywel Williams Hywel Williams Shadow PC Spokesperson (International Development), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Work and Pensions), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Defence), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Cabinet Office), Shadow PC Spokesperson (International Trade), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Foreign Affairs), Shadow PC Chief Whip

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will make an assessment of the potential impact of the decision not to uprate Local Housing Allowance in line with September 2022 CPI inflation on the proportion of homes available to rent in Wales in respect of which the requested rent would be fully covered by LHA rates in the next twelve months.

Photo of Mims Davies Mims Davies The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

No recent assessment has been made.

Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates determine the maximum housing support available to claimants in the private rented sector. They are not intended to cover all rents in all areas.

We recognise that rents are increasing but the challenging fiscal environment means that difficult decisions were necessary to ensure support is targeted effectively. The Chancellor announced at Autumn Statement a package of targeted support worth £26 billion.

To protect the most vulnerable, working age and disability benefits will be increased in line with inflation for 2023-24, increasing expenditure by £11 billion in 23/24. In addition, to ensure that households will see an increase in their benefits following uprating – the benefit cap will also be increased in line with CPI (10.1%) in April 2023.

For those who require extra support, the government is extending the Household Support Fund providing an additional £1 billion of funding, including Barnett impact, to enable the extension of the Household Support Fund in England in the next financial year. In England this will be through an extension to the Household Support Fund backed by £842 million, running from 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024. It will be for the devolved administrations to decide how to allocate their additional Barnett funding (£158m).

For those who require additional support with housing costs, Discretionary Housing Payments (DHPs) are available. Since 2011 we have provided nearly £1.5 billion in funding for DHPs.

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