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Under occupancy

Since April 2013, the amount of housing benefit you can claim has been reduced if you are of working age and have a spare bedroom.

What is a spare bedroom? The new rules mean you will be allocated one bedroom for each person or couple living as part of the household. There are exceptions:

  • Children under 16 of the same gender will be expected to share
  • Children under 10 will be expected to share regardless of gender
  • Disabled tenant or partner requiring a non resident overnight carer will be allowed an extra room

How does this affect you?

If you have one spare bedroom, your housing benefit will be cut by 14% of the rent you pay every week.

If you have two or more spare bedrooms, you will lose 25%.

If your benefit is cut, you will have to pay the difference between your housing benefit and your rent.

Contact Us:

If you are affected by the size criteria, it is important that you continue to pay your rent in full, making up any shortfall in your housing benefit. If you don't pay your rent you could lose your home

However, there are a number of things you can do to avoid a benefit deduction, or to ensure you have enough money to make up the shortfall. For information and advice, call our Rents team on 0300 561 1111 (this is included in any inclusive calls made from a mobile and low cost for all landlines) or alternatively email: