Under-occupancy for social housing tenants
The Government has set rules on the number of bedrooms for people who rent a home from us, a housing association or a registered social landlord. This can make a difference to your housing benefit.
You will be allowed one bedroom for:
- each adult couple
- anyone over the age of 16
- two children of the same sex under 16
- two children under 10 whether boy or girl
- any other child
- if you or your partner need overnight care
- a carer who does not normally live with you
- a severely disabled child when it would be wrong for them to share a bedroom
- an empty room expected to be used by a child you are fostering
- a room left empty by an adult child serving in the Armed Forces while they are away on operations
These rules will apply even if:
- you and your partner need to sleep apart for medical reasons
- your child lives somewhere else but you have a spare room for when they stay with you
If you have one 'spare' bedroom we will cut your maximum housing beneﬁt by 14% of the rent you pay each week.
If you have two or more 'spare' bedrooms, we will reduce it by 25%.
There are people who would not be affected including:
- those of state pension credit age or with a partner of that age
- disabled people in a home provided by a county council, housing association, registered charity or voluntary organisation that provides care, support or supervision for the tenant
- homeless people in temporary accommodation
- those in shared ownership homes
If your housing benefit does not cover all your rent and you need more help, you might want to consider a discretionary housing payment.