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Opinion: The Labour Party – the biggest bedroom tax incompetents. IT COSTS MORE, you idiots!

18th December 2014

By Joe Halewood, housing blogger As I write, the Labour Party are using an opposition day debate on getting rid of the bedroom tax. I should be delighted at that. Yet they are the most incompetent ineffectual buffoons who do not know anything about the bedroom tax or about how to argue for its demise. The Labour Party are more content to isolate the Liberal Democrats on this debate than to get rid of the policy. That assertion is, regrettably, easily proved as the BEDROOM TAX COSTS MORE! On a few ...

Bedroom tax bombshell as Lib Dems vote TO KEEP controversial policy

18th December 2014

By Rob Gershon, 24dash correspondent  So, the final opposition day debate to get rid of the bedroom tax has taken place, and as I predicted earlier in the week, both coalition partners appear to have voted to keep the policy in place.  “That this House believes that the housing benefit social sector size criteria, otherwise known as the bedroom tax, should be abolished with immediate effect.”  In what was a rather predictable debate, all the parties stuck to their entren...

Brighton moves to abolish right to buy

16th December 2014

Brighton & Hove City Council has moved to abolish the government's controversial right to buy policy. The city's councillors have approved a motion by the ruling Green Party to scrap the scheme, which objectors have argued leads to social homes ending up in the portfolios of private rented sector (PRS) landlords. The council will now ask central government for permission to scrap the policy in the city. According to housing committee chairman Bill Randall, Brighton & Hove has lost 6,0...

Government’s ‘starter homes’ initiative praised by BPF

16th December 2014

The British Property Federation (BPF) has praised the government’s new ‘starter homes’ initiative, and has claimed that the scheme will boost brownfield development. Launched by Prime Minister David Cameron yesterday, the proposals will see the government change the planning system to free under-used or unviable brownfield land from planning costs and levies in return for a below market value sale price from homes built on the site. The government expects the starter homes in...

UKIP's plans for tackling homelessness revealed

16th December 2014

UKIP’s national housing spokesman has slammed the Tory-led coalition’s bedroom tax and welfare cuts as he laid out the party’s plans for tackling homelessness.  Writing on his website, Andrew Charalambous said that homelessness in modern day Britain is “morally unacceptable” and that UKIP would make its elimination its “very first housing priority”.  Mr Charalamnous called for a national homeless register “to identify as far as possible ...

Opinion: How the DWP’s bedroom tax guidance has trumped the law

16th December 2014

By Rob Gershon, 24dash contributor Some time ago, I wrote a blog piece about the possibility that Lord Freud was skirting around the legal decisions that had been made in a case that underpinned a lot of the early legal discussion about bedroom tax. I focussed on the fact that Lord Freud, and by extension the local authorities that followed his 'guidance', had made an error in law when he suggested that some people in receipt of disability living allowance should have their eligibility for dis...

Dead being buried in back gardens as costs soar 87%, warns MP

9th December 2014

Soaring funeral costs are driving people to bury their dead relatives in their own back gardens, an MP has warned. Speaking in the House of Commons, Labour MP Emma Lewell-Buck said that huge price rises were making even basic funerals unaffordable for many, forcing some to hold "do it yourself" services. The South Shields MP, who has now called for the introduction of a bill that will review costs and for the creation of an affordable service, revealed that the average funeral now cost £...

'Modern day slaves' to take visa protest to Westminster

9th December 2014

The UK's migrant domestic workers (MDWs) will take to the streets of Westminster tomorrow to demonstrate against the government’s changes to the Migrant Domestic Workers Visa. According to union Unite, the country's MDWs have become "modern day slaves" after the government abolished their right to change employer once they are in the UK. The protestors and Unite are calling for the reinstatement of the Overseas Domestic Worker visa, abolished in April 2012, arguing that under the Tory-led coa...

Opinion: Do lefties love social housing because it keeps the poor poor?

9th December 2014

By Max Salsbury, 24dash reporter I have been involved in my first ‘Twitter spat’. Spat? I mean ‘mild disagreement’. Certainly, it was nothing like the blood-curdling, psychopathic Twitter meltdowns I read about in the papers. In a little three-way tweetathon between myself, Lucy Ferman of Placeshapers and Ed Rennie of think tank ResPublica, the question of council housing and the right to buy briefly popped up. To cut a short Twitter exchange even shorter, Ed tweeted: &ldq...

Council moves to make sure homes are regularly occupied

5th December 2014

Islington Council is to consult on plans that would require new homes in the borough to be regularly occupied – in an attempt to halt the rise of so-called ‘buy-to-leave’ properties. The council says it has has seen an increase in new homes being sold as investments, often marketed off-plan overseas, and left to stand empty - especially in the south of Islington near the City. According to council research, as many as a third or more of homes in some new developments are poten...