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Government urged to reverse proposed cuts to housing benefit for the under 21s

With fresh research revealing that most landlords are unlikely to rent to under-21s following housing benefit cut for 18-21s, the Residential Landlords Association (RLA) is calling on the government to reverse the pending tax hikes.

A new survey of more than 1,000 landlords by the RLA shows that 76% fear this measure will leave under 21s unable to pay their rent, making landlords less willing to let property to those in this age group.

“Cuts to housing benefit will make it risky for landlords to rent to those receiving it,” said RLA vice-chairman, Chris Town. “Rented housing is crucial to enabling young people to quickly access work and education opportunities.”

Town wants the government to think again and use today’s Budget to reverse its plans to cut housing benefit for the under 21s.

The new Universal Credit regulation states that jobless 18-21-year-olds will no longer qualify for help with their rental costs and will affect new claims made after April 1, although there will be some exemptions.

The government insist that vulnerable people will continue to be protected, as will carers, those with families and those who have been in work for at least six months prior to claiming, as well as those working at least 16 hours at the national minimum wage.  

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