Social housing – Dear Oldie, here’s a bung, buy a house or we hit you with the bedroom tax says Osborne!!

George Osborne, Chancellor has announced a £20k to £30k bung aimed at older social tenants to give up their social tenancy and go buy.  If they can’t afford to buy then under UC first the mixed-age pensioner couple in social housing will get hit with the bedroom tax and then its inevitable that it will applied to all social housing pensioners.

Let’s paraphrase what Osborne says shall we?

Dear Oldie,

You are the subject of huge positive discrimination as a social tenant now, and in the future, as the welfare reforms including the bedroom tax only apply to those of working age.  Yet you are a problem as it is your age group that are the real scroungers who wollow around in scarce social housing properties thus denying them to those that really need such properties.

However, as you know, you account for more than 40% of the voting public – we call you the grey vote and we need you as all parties do.  That is why you have hitherto received this favourable treatment of not being victimised by the bedroom tax and other cuts, sorry, necessary austerity programmes.

We have delayed the Universal Credit roll out as we hope you do not notice that under UC both you and your wife or husband needs to be of pensionable age to be exempt from it whereas now only one of you has to be.  Naturally this will not come in before 7th May as we need your vote.

Yet, you are a problem.  Despite having to raise the pensionable age many times which of course means more of you will be caught by the bedroom tax, we are privatising the NHS as fast as we can so that many of you die sooner and help alleviate this problem of us Conservatives hitting you with punitive cuts such as the bedroom tax.  You may be aware of the oft-reported battles I have had with IDS to stop his UC programme which will shaft you in the same way as we now shaft the working age population.

As IDS has informed Parliament, though we did try to keep this quiet, you the pensioner take 68% of all welfare benefit spend or simply more than £2 in every £3 of the welfare budget.  Of course when we attack the benefit scroungers who are bankrupting the country we don’t dare say this is you, hence raising the pension age and privatising the NHS makes sense for the country.

benefitspend

 

 

To make that easier for you to understand I made a picture for you with my crayons and don’t worry Nursey made sure they were not too sharp.

wb£

Yet we can’t say this publicly of course and that is why I have dreamt up this brown paper bag bung for you so you can be part of the great property owning democracy, that Thatcherite notion which bought her 3 elections successes while we registered her domicile in Caribbean tax havens to avoid paying taxes that would have meant the country could afford all you old farts …sorry older citizens.

My speech today has been reported in Inside Housing as that is a very Conservative friendly magazine with respect to our genocide, sorry housing policy. That story (co-written by Hans Christian Anderson) is below.

Osborne offers tenants cash as right to buy alternative

George Osborne has announced an £84m pot to offer social tenants up to £30,000 to buy a new home on the open market. The policy, announced in a major speech on housing this morning, will allow tenants who would have qualified for the Right to Buy to leave their social home and buy a new property.

Dubbed the Social Mobility Fund, it will be offered to tenants across England from April.

Local authorities will bid for a share of the cash, which they can then offer to tenants. The deadline for bids is 18 March. The maximum discount available will be £20,000 across England and £30,000 in London, which is substantially lower than the £70,000 and £100,000 respectively offered under the Right to Buy.

A Treasury spokesperson said this was because the tenant gets a ‘substantial additional benefit’ of being able to select their home. he funding will be offered to help the tenant buy any available property of their choice.

The government said it would welcome bids from local authorities that offer the product to housing association tenants who would have qualified under the preserved right to buy. It is not open to housing association tenants who would have qualified for the right to acquire.

Similar schemes have already been offered in several local authority areas nationwide, including Wandsworth in south London, the spokesperson added. The announcement came as George Osborne presented a slew of measures to help build 400,000 homes in London by 2025.

The coalition government has hugely increased the available discounts available under Right to Buy, but has been criticised for failing to do enough to ensure these properties are replaced.

A prospectus on the proposal says: ‘Some social tenants who are able to afford to exercise their Right to Buy are prevented from doing so because the social property in which they live is not suitable for their needs, or is difficult to mortgage.

‘The Government wants to help tenants trapped in social housing as a result of these barriers to access home ownership.’

The prospectus says the government is keen to prioritise older tenants seeking to move into appropriate accommodation or closer to family, working tenants who wish to move for employment and tenants that struggle to get a mortgage because of the nature of their property.

…so come join the great property owning democracy with this cut price bung else we will have to hit you with the bedroom tax.  You know it makes sense

Yours in anticipation of your vote

Georgie Boy

*******************************

UPDATE

The above has caused a bit of a stir.

Firstly, many appear NOT to have realised that under UC the mixed-aged pensioner couple (that is one above one below state pension age) is liable for the bedroom tax.  See here (pdf) for full details and why the housing umbrella bodies in CIH, NHF and NHC have known about this since 2012.

Secondly, given that UC will cost at least £20 billion per year more as its principle is everyone gets what they are entitled to, a 100% take up of benefit and tax credits, this not a penny more not a penny LESS principle of UC means benefits and credits not now claimed will be paid and hat is easily in excess of £20 billion per year.

Thirdly and linked to the above is that IDS says the current 2015 welfare spend is £170 billion and (a) only 32% of that goes to working age claimants or £54.4 billion and (b) the coalition say they want to cut a further £25 billion from the welfare spend, then that cannot be achievable from the £54.4 billion paid to working-age claimants in any case so the non-working age (60+) will be getting targeted and have to be.   So then this added £20 billion of UC cost will mean they will be targeted even more.

Fourthly, in terms of older persons look at this breakdown from the English Housing Survey by age and how hugely disproportionately older persons reside in social housing.

agetenants

As I stated here if you are old (or  sick or disabled) then social housing is the ONLY place you can live as the private rented sector model does not accommodate the older person. 44% of the entire social housing tenant profile are over 55 compared with just 15% in the private rented sector.

So the proportion of older persons in social housing – the ones Osborne is targeting – is a huge percentage of the social tenant profile and the social housing model.

The above are just some of the reasons why older social tenants are being targeted and gives some idea of how significant this will be for social housing

UPDATE 24th February 18.45pm

Some discussion below re the importance of the pensioner vote and to add to that and confirm my point here is a graphic for the ‘grey vote’ and note by comparison just 44% of under 25s vote

greyvote

A stark comparison and a telling one!

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28 thoughts on “Social housing – Dear Oldie, here’s a bung, buy a house or we hit you with the bedroom tax says Osborne!!

  1. In an ambiguous way I am glad that pensioners are going to be hit by the government [mainly because they support the Tories and in a lot of cases supported the benefit “reforms”].
    I knew the “protection of pensioners” wouldn’t last long.

    1. UC has always meant the mixed age pensioner couple get hit with the bedroom tax. Now its take the money or we apply it to ALL pensioners (except those domiciled in tax havens like Thatcher!!)

    2. your wrong. only the well off pensioners support the tories… those on pension credit etc knew it was only a matter of time before this lot ran out of ideas for whipping the younger end and started on us. so thanks a lot cos once that happens it wont just be one pensioner here that will suffer but her grown up kids who up to now has been able to help them through the problems this lot in Westminster have rained down on them. my granddaughter has been sanctioned 6 times in the year she has lived up north with her dad…each time i had to help her and her dad in one way or another.. but if all comes in that is being chucked around at the mo for us poorer pensioners they wont get any help at all. probably lose their flat etc and i could lose my bungalow. you want us elderly disabled people on the streets? cos it’ll come to that. (pensioners who i might add,a lot of us, have been doing what we can to stop some of the things IDS etc have come up with. so don’t knock us as if we are getting away with anything. i go without things that would make my end years more enjoyable just to keep my kids with a roof over their heads ,warmth under that roof, and food in their bellies.i help pay some of the extra bills they’ve bin landed with,(council tax etc)….so don’t be glad, even a little bit. we do our bit for you all. . one day you will be standing/sitting right here where i am. and i hope you will then appreciate what most of those pensioners who have a better heart than some have, have done for those with less than them

      1. I did say I had ambiguous feelings about the issue:
        Thing is the Tories have a huge following of pensioners and that cannot be denied, which is why [so far] the Tories have pandered to them. You should have been in my street last week, all the Tory-election campaigners were pensioners.
        I make true statements and not hurtful ones: because I have two disabled relatives that have been through the ATOS/WCA hell and a daughter that [when unemployed] was forced to work for Poundland for nothing.
        My [late] neighbour was found “fit” for work from his hospital bed and he died two weeks after his ATOS “miracle cure”.
        So yes, as a family, we have had more than our fair share of this government!

    3. that is a sweeping generalisation – I am a pensioner voted labour all my life and I have been crippled by the cuts – dont make statements like this it is rally annoying

      1. Thing is the Tories have a huge following of pensioners and that cannot be denied, which is why [so far] the Tories have pandered to them. You should have been in my street last week, all the Tory-election campaigners were pensioners.
        I make true statements and not hurtful ones: because I have two disabled relatives that have been through the ATOS/WCA hell and a daughter that [when unemployed] was forced to work for Poundland for nothing. So yes, as a family, we have had more than our fair share of this government!

      2. I never implied that your statement was untrue merely that you tarred all pensioners with the same brush, I live in the North east a Labour stronghold, not many pensioners around here would vote Tory they are still coming to terms with what Churchill, and Thatcher did to the miners

      3. All I said was – statistically – a higher percentage of pensioner votes goes to the Tories. That is not name calling, it is simply a fact whether we like it or not.

  2. Joe i was replying to victedy… and if 40% of pensioners vote tory then 60% must vote for other parties ..lets hope majority of those vote Labour. as this pensioner will be doing.

    1. No, statistics over many years show that pensioners vote on a Tory +8 basis and vote on a Labour -6 basis. So if both parties polled 36% then pensioners would vote 44% for Tory (36+8) and 30% Labour (36-6)

      1. sorry
        Joe, that dont make sense to me. and probably not to most older folk. when i went to school. if 40% VOTE TORIES then that leaves 60% to vote for other parties. wheres the 36% come in? and this +8 or- 6??? no dont bother cos i know ill not take it in let alone understand it. no wonder the worlds going mad if formulas like that are used. why cant anyone stick to basics? 1+1=2..common sense instead of trying to blind people with formulas that mean nothing to them. this is why so many don’t vote.they don’t understand when figures like this are thrown at them. can we have it put simply please?

      2. Pensioners vote for more than 2 parties just like all other groups do. It is not a case of Labour or Tory – some vote LD some SNP some for others. If the Tories get 36% of the overall vote it is likely to mean 44% of pensioners voted for them as that is typical difference in past GEs. If Labour get 36% of all the vote it is likely only 30% of pensioners voted for them. No party pisses off the pensioner vote as they ARE crucial to winning a GE so this post about Tories going to hit their benefits after election is very significant as it will reduce the Tory vote if it becomes known

  3. Sadly statistics are just that, collected, stored and brought up as and when required, it’s been known for a long time that “pensioners” draw the largest share of he larger SH homes and at the same time benefits, it’s ok to say “don’t attack the old unwell pensioner, with benefit cuts and BT” I have long said that what’s good for the goose is good for the gander so to speak, I can’t see what’s different about an OAP from a normal benefit claimant other than they appear to date to have been protected in many ways if it’s not in DLA it’s in BT and so it goes on yet they as a group still claim the lions share of the pot, is that fair? I and many, many don’t as there is NO difference between a younger disabled, unwell or vulnerable tenant and a pensioner or at least in a fair society there shouldn’t be, sadly it’s not a level fare field thus it’s the younger claimants and tenants that get the lesser share of said pot and available SH yet we are just expected to get on with it, taking what they throw at us, whilst the elders in society carry on? It’s only fair that we are all treated the same, exactly what I’ve suggested since BT started was the only fair way to do this, Uc/DLA Social Housing etc appears to finally going to be playing off a level playing field at long last, and it can’t come fast enough for many of us, allowing for far more movement in social housing, and if further cuts are rolled out to this group, then they will know exactly how worried many housebound younger tenants and claimants feel. Currently threatened with eviction and being put out on the street, looking on the brightside, we can all assist each other on the streets as that’s where were all heading………..sad but true, and any decent family In this time of austerity are having to help younger/older family members I have both knowledge of families having taken older/younger family members in to try to make life easier it’s just what you do, is it not? It’s not an action specific to OAPs as far as I am aware.

    “BT now reaches family members previously left out of terrible cuts”

  4. why dont we all take to the streets of london(i mean all) bring the shithole to a standstill for a week and then invade parliament to show these cretins that we are not bhaving their cuts til they hit the rich.we all seem to be doing nothing but complain and it dont work.come on get a backbone!!!

    1. @ Garry Powell – Well At least looking on the brightside, using your route to cure these issues we would all end up with a Bedroom Tax sized bedroom, all heating paid for and three square meals a day can’t be all bad I suppose, but hey wait a minute it’s cool coz Millibqnd and his cronies are about to ride in, on his many promises (none he shalt keep, as non of them upon gaining power ever do 🙂 ) and save us all anyway so why are we all worrying and fretting so much !!!!

  5. @Joe Halewood – Does the fact they don’t give a flying four ex bout London in terms of BT, then mean that is ok To react in the manner in which Garry Powell suggests above then? I personally I am sure along with a large majority of the General public wouldn’t agree, as history has shown us such action only ends in innocent people either themselves or their property getting damaged if not destroyed surely NO right thinking person, irrespective of their political believes could logically allow, condone nor encourage such behaviour, I have taken a great amount of stick for adopting this middle of the fence information applying sites since this all started what seems like decades ago now, however I don’t believe such actions will NOT lead to violence and the inevitable outcome thereafter thus this CANNOT and should not be condoned by anyone really, let’s just trust it doesn’t come to that :). 🙂

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