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Spare room subsidy

The spare room subsidy is also known as the under occupation penalty or 'bedroom tax'. If you receive housing benefit, your benefit will be reduced depending on the number of bedrooms you have that are classed as 'spare'. 

For example: 

  • If you live in a two-bedroom house with a weekly rent of £73 and only need one bedroom, your benefit will be reduced by £10.22 a week.
  • If you live in a four-bedroom house with a weekly rent of £89 and only need two bedrooms, your benefit will be reduced by £22.25 a week.


How might this affect me?

  • Girls and boys under ten are expected to share a bedroom.

  • Children of the same gender are expected to share a bedroom up to the age of 16 years.

  • A couple or single person will see their housing benefit reduced by 14% for one 'spare' bedroom and 25% for two or more 'spare' bedrooms.

  • If you are not the main carer of your children, for example you only see them at weekends, you will not be allowed an extra bedroom and your housing benefit will be reduced. 


What are my options?

  • Pay the extra money yourself - contact us on 08006 335548 if you need help to work through your budgets.
  • Move to a smaller property - contact Housing Needs on 01509 634567 or apply for a transfer.
  • Claim Discretionary Housing Payments
  • Rent out a room - inform your Housing Officer on 01509 634666 if you plan to rent out a room.

Use the Housing Benefit Calculator to find out how much you are entitled to

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