Welfare reform

Under occupying social housing

Your housing benefit may be cut if you are of working age and the Government decides you have more bedrooms than you need.

How many bedrooms am I allowed?

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 (or team of carers) who don’t live with you but provide you or your partner with regular overnight care

How much benefit will I lose?

If you have more bedrooms than the rules allow, the reduction will be;

  • 14% if you have one extra bedroom
  • 25% if you have two or more extra bedrooms


You won’t be affected if:

  • you live in a caravan, mobile home or houseboat
  • you live in an ‘excluded tenancy’ such as:
    • regulated tenancies entered into before 15 January 1989
    • a shared ownership property
    • temporary accommodation
  • you are in temporary accommodation because you are homeless or at risk of being homeless
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