Housing organisations campaign against ‘unfair’ Pay-to-Stay

Government plans to to charge council home households earning £30,000 a year unaffordable market rents have come under scrutiny by several housing organisations.

The dubbed ‘Pay-to-Stay’ proposal, first outlined in the 2015 Budget, could mean that households with incomes as low as £30,000 being forced to pay expensive market rates.

Tpas, a tenant representative organisation, and housing campaign group SHOUT have published a report arguing the policy will punish the less well-off and increase welfare dependency, claiming it could also prove an ‘administrative nightmare and a breach of taxpayer confidentiality’.

Jenny Osbourne, Tpas chief executive, said: “The government should listen to tenants and housing experts and drop this unfair tax on aspiration and hard work. Council tenants who work hard, get on in life and are already paying their full rent shouldn’t be punished with swingeing rent increases or be forced out of their homes.”

Alison Inman, SHOUT leading campaigner, said: “I hope that, having listened to the arguments of all parties on other aspects of the Bill this week, the Government will also agree to make the kinds of changes being suggested by Bob Kerslake and other distinguished peers and agree to the very sensible changes they are proposing, if it can’t see its way to dropping this mistaken idea altogether.”