Changes for Social Housing Tenants (Bedroom Tax)

If you are of working age and rent your home from a housing association, your Housing Benefit will be reduced if you have more bedrooms than the rules say your household needs. You may have heard this referred to as the 'Bedroom Tax'.

The new rules allow one bedroom for:

  • every adult couple (married or unmarried)
  • any other adult aged 16 or over
  • any two children of the same sex aged under 16
  • any two children aged under 10
  • any other child, (other than a foster child or child whose main home is elsewhere)
  • a carer who does not normally live with you but provide you or your partner with overnight care.

How many rooms am I entitled to?

To work out how many bedrooms you are entitled please visit the bedroom calculator.

When bedroom tax doesn't apply: special cases

You can claim housing benefit for a spare bedroom if:

  • you're disabled and have an overnight carer who normally lives elsewhere (only 1 spare bedroom is allowed)
  • you have a disabled child under 16 who can't share a room - there are qualifying conditions in that you must receive middle or high rate of Disability Living Allowance or equivalent Personal Independence Payment and the child reasonably requires their own bedroom.
  • you're a foster carer who's been approved by social services and is between placements or newly approved (for up to 52 weeks)
  • you have a child away in the armed or reserve forces (if they plan to return to live with you)
  • If you are a couple, but because of medical reasons find it difficult to share a bedroom.

In each of the above scenarios, we can grant an extra bedroom which may make a difference to the calculation of your Housing Benefit. Where circumstances are not met you may alternatively request a Discretionary Housing Payment (see below for details) to limit any hardship felt.