This is the terms that you have to pay rent for any unused bedrooms within your property.
There has been uproar between my Twitter and Facebook feed because of this change, and my main question is why?
Why are you angry that you are being asked to pay for your rent?
Why are you entitled to these extra bedrooms, yet families in need aren't?
Why should you have a 3 bedroom house for the same price as a 1 bedroom flat?
There are SO many questions, that I genuinely do not know where to start.
If you read this blog then you will know that I am in receipt of housing benefit. I won't hide this fact, nor will I hide the fact that I hate having to claim it. I have had more problems with my local council over the past 2 months than I care to count and I wish that I didn't have to deal with it. Unfortunately, my 2 bedroom, 5 roomed house has a rent more than double any council house, therefore I have to claim. My circumstances (the fact I am NOT a single parent) does not allow me to apply for a council house. I have no grounds. Therefore I am stuck in the private renting sector despite not earning enough to belong here. Even when Ross wasn't working and I was claiming Housing Benefit, we still weren't in a desperate enough position to be eligible for council housing, despite paying over £110 in rent whilst on Job Seekers.
So when I see people who are living in a 3 bedroom council house for £300 a month, MOANING that they have to pay for the extra 1 or 2 bedrooms they don't even use, it really pisses me off.
I admit, I can barely afford the house I live in along with housing benefit, but that's not even my issue. My problem is with the fact that these people are keeping these 2-3 bedroomed properties for themselves absolutely FREE of charge, whilst there are single mothers out there living in filthy hostels and shared accomodations with newborn babies and toddlers, because there is no housing available to them.
The main argument for this seems to be that "Well I have Grandchildren come to stay." That doesn't matter. What about the PARENT who has to live in their one bedroom flat with their baby, just because you can't be bothered to provide a blow up/camp bed. How about you have that family come and live with you? Better yet, GIVE that family the housing and bedrooms YOU DON'T NEED.
I'm lucky. Lucky in the sense that since I moved out of my Mums house, I have always been able to afford my rent. Yes, I claim housing benefit to help me, but I live in a house that is far too over priced and am looking to move. This has not always been the case, when we moved out, we could afford to rent and we did for ages. I can't apply for council housing now, because I am not classified as 'in need'.
This just reminds me of those families who are in need. My Mum lived in a 3 bedroom council house along with me, my sister and Ross. When Ross and I moved out, she exchanged to a 2 bedroom, whilst the other family moved into our old house. Someone who needed it. Both of our next door neighbours lived in 3 bedroom houses and there was only ever 1 person living in the houses. Our right hand side neighbour in particular was confined to the downstairs of her house, meaning the 3 bedrooms upstairs were not being used at all. 4 years later, she is still in the same house, as is our other neighbour.
If you are not willing to pay for your 'extra accomodation' which, to be quite frank, is exactly what it is, then move to a smaller and cheaper house.
There are people out there who are far worse off than you. Do you really need those extra bedrooms for the sake of a few family visits? Are you selfish enough to complain because you're having to pay for a room in your house, where 2 or 3 people live, where a family of 5 could quite happily occupy?
Even though I sound down right hypocritical, if you can't afford those extra bedrooms, give them to a family who needs them.
If I was lucky enough to occupy a 3 bedroom council house, then I would quite happily pay the extra rent. Because, between you and me, it's still less than what I pay right now for a 2 bedroom private rented.
The next time you complain "I can't afford it" or "I have Grandchildren that come and visit", spare a thought for EVERYONE else.