News Policy

Challenging a bedroom tax cut

The effects of the bedroom tax will soon come home to roost. Housing benefit cuts will soon become a harsh reality for over 100,000 tenants in Scotland, putting many at risk of eviction and even homelessness.

In light of recent news, such as GPs in Glasgow being advised not to provide letters to support appeals against benefits decisions, we think it’s vital that those affected by unfair cuts like this get as much help as possible.

Govan Law Centre recently published a toolkit to help people affected by a housing benefit reduction because of a bedroom tax decision. It gives tenants the opportunity to challenge bedroom tax decisions, for example where a room has been wrongly classified as a bedroom, or an ‘extra’ room is required for someone with a disability. With their permission we have made this toolkit available to download for tenants across Scotland who affected by bedroom tax reductions.

Download Govan Law Centre’s toolkit and guidance.

Such has been the speed of change that for many advice workers and volunteers, keeping informed about the detail of the welfare reforms has been a near impossible task. Shelter Scotland Enterprise team have produced an e-learning programme for housing and welfare advice workers that can help those working to support tenants struggling to navigate their way through the cuts.

Anyone worried about the effect these changes will have on their housing situation should get advice as soon as possible. Call Shelter Scotland’s free housing advice line on 0808 800 4444, lines are open 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday.

About the author

James Battye

James Battye

I manage Shelter Scotland’s Oak Foundation funded private rented sector project work. The project is focussed on increasing private tenants’ consumer voice in Scotland, supporting new initiatives to encourage best-practice amongst letting agents and working with private landlords in Dundee and Lochaber to improve standards.

  • Respectfully, ‘coming home to roost’ is used wrongly. The phrase means that one is forced to live with the consequences of one’s own past misdeeds.

    Plainly, you do not mean to imply that the householders are paying for having been so profligate as to have a spare bedroom.

    • James_Battye

      You’re completely right – through no fault of
      their own, tenants will build up arrears and face the threat of eviction. And as we’ve shown the ‘bedroom tax’ would end up costing the government more if tenants are made to downsize into the private rented sector