A new report by the JRF demonstrates the limited benefit that the bedroom tax has had on public finances – it has saved £115m less in savings than estimated by the DWP. According to the report, by November 2013 there were 498,000 people affected by the tax, while only 6% had moved house as a result of the measure and 22% remain registered for a transfer or exchange.
Their research mirrors that published last week by the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations, which reported that welfare reform and in particular the bedroom tax are affected the viability of new housing developments and limiting their capacity to do more.
Worryingly, they also found evidence that some associations are turning away some of the poorest prospective tenants over doubts about their ability to afford housing.
The report questions whether reforms may actually end up costing the government more, as social housing tenants and prospective tenants increasingly opt for accommodation in the private sector, which is generally more expensive.
Source: Joseph Rowntree Foundation