“Bedroom Tax will curtail spending capacity” says estate agent

Mr. Ranvir Singh, an employee of Henley Charles Estate Agents at Erdington, Birmingham shares his views on Bedroom Tax.Bedroom Tax is for social housing and doesn’t affect private lending sector. The Henley Charles Estate Agents deal private lending sectors with individual landlords. Hence the company and its employees will not be affected by the tax.

The government is conservative in introducing the tax, with a view to cut down some benefits to staff and as such it is a staff tax. As regards with the use of the tax revenue, it will benefit in getting big rooms at a lower cost, which will be affordable to people. If people cannot afford the tax, they have to move out to small spaces, facilitating others to use the bigger space who can afford. Also the tax in effect curtails the spending capacity of people.

He says:

 “Bedroom Tax will affect from the individual person up to national level.”

The company has a data base of lots of people who wish to move houses with lesser number of bedrooms. Also, it has the details of tenants and people without housing benefits. On the issue of shortage of smaller properties in Birmingham, if private landlords are given offer, the same can be resolved.

Following are the housing beneficiaries: An unemployed and less than 25 year will get 220 pounds per month. For such persons, if they are above 40 years, 400 pounds will be given towards payments including bedroom allowance. A family with two children will get two bed room allowances. If they are in three bed room house, either they can move to a smaller house or pay the tax.

On the business prospects of the company, Mr. Singh was of the view that the first time buyers will find it difficult to buy a house. It is a good time for letting agencies all over the UK.

In Erdington, most houses were built long back in the years 1920s and 1930s, mostly with three bedrooms. Also, the houses built in 1950s and 1960s were also mostly three bedrooms ones. While the majority of present families are eligible for two bed room allowances only, the people of Erdington are the most affected.

The present situation of shortage of small houses and other issues can be resolved by the council, provided the private landlords are encouraged under some specific schemes, like assuring to take them for a period of five to ten years contract. Then the present situation will melt down to normal in a period of two years.

The below link would help to calculate the number of Bedrooms required in accordance with the number of family members in different age groups from April 1st:

http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/housing_benefit_-_bedroom_calculator_for_social_housing_tenants.htm

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Ethnically diverse areas of Birmingham to be most affected?

Statistics released by Birmingham City Council, indicate that the most culturally diverse areas of Birmingham are likely to have the highest rates of people affected by the Bedroom Tax.

Ladywood, possibly the most affected area, has the lowest proportion of white residents in Birmingham at just over a third. The predicted least affected area of the city is Sutton Coldfield, where a massive 94% of its residents are white.

As previously reported, less than 10% of Sutton Coldfield’s population is expected to be affected by the Bedroom Tax, in comparison to almost half of Ladywood’s residents.

suttoneth ladywoodeth

More specifically, Ladywood’s population includes 2 percentage points more Asian residents than white. Over 5% are mixed and almost 1 in 5 are black.

Sutton Coldfield’s ethnic makeup could not be more different. Just over 3% of its residents are Asian, around 1 in 100 are of mixed race and the same amount are black.

When questioned about the occurring pattern of Bedroom Tax and ethnic minorities, Councillor David Barrie (Conservative), strongly denied the act of discrimination:

“I reject absolutely the implicit suggestion that the changes discriminate against ethnic minorities.”

He went on to say:

“Inequality yes, discrimination no.”

Other areas of Birmingham predicted to be fairly highly affected by the Bedroom Tax are Erdington, Northfield and Hodge Hill. Those expected to not see many effects of the benefit cuts include Hall Green, Perry Barr and Yardley.

ethnicity

However, Hall Green, Hodge Hill and Perry Barr are the other locations in Birmingham to have a high proportion of ethnic minorities, with only around half of residents in each area being white. Hodge Hill particularly shows a negative relationship between ethnicity and these benefit cuts, with around a third of residents potentially affected.

Ladywood to be the most affected area of Birmingham?

Almost half of Ladywood residents will potentially be affected by the Bedroom Tax. Around 49% are either council tenants or live in a Housing Association property.

ladywood1

Statistics released by Birmingham City Council, show that over 31% of Ladywood residents live in Local Authority Housing, as well as almost 18% living in a property provided by the Housing Association. The tenants who are deemed to have a spare bedroom will see the effects of April 2013’s new policy.

ladywood2

With only 29% of Ladywood council tenants having just one bedroom, a potential of 71% may be affected by the Bedroom Tax. If rooms are not filled to the requirements of the policy, residents will see their benefits cut significantly. Negative effects have already began to occur in the Ladywood area. One resident’s story can be seen here.

Erdington, Northfield and Hodge Hill are other areas of Birmingham which have fairly high Local Authority and Housing Association rates.

erdington1 northfield1 hodgehill1

Around a third of Erdington’s residents may be affected by the Bedroom Tax, as almost 21% are council tenants and a further 10.7% live in a HA property. Northfield shows slightly higher results. 33.5% of its population are likely to be affected, with nearly 28% in council housing and over 5% depending on the HA. Hodge Hill indicates similar statistics, with over 32% potentially being affected by Bedroom Tax. Over a quarter live in Local Authority Housing and nearly 7% live in a property provided by the HA.

Click on the image to view the full map.

Click on the image to view the full map.

This map shows where these highly affected areas are in Birmingham.