Scandal of higher rate tax payers in council houses

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  • Scandal of higher rate tax payers in council houses
  • Premier Icon stumpyjon
    Subscriber

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-16376455

    With millions in need of social housing (deserving or not but that’s another thread) it’s a bit rich (pardon the pun) for people on really good incomes (6000 in excess of £ 100k) to be getting subsidised council houses. Surely anyone on or above the average income should be paying market rates for their homes (like all the people who haven’t relied on the state for their homes.

    I understand it’s not right to kick people out of their homes and they were probably completely entitled to the house when they first got it but surely after they hit athreshold they should be given the choice of buying the house or renting it at market rates. The money generated should then be pumped into building new social housing.

    Seems obvious to me, it’s fair to those outside the social housing system, it creates revenue for new social housing to ease that need, it allows the social housing stock to be constantly renewed, it’ll continue to break up the ghetto estates to some extent, what’s not to like?

    How did we ever get into this mess? Even the Tories are only just playing at it suggesting that people with an income inexcess of £ 100k should have to pay ‘near’ market rent. For those of you who think means testing is fundamentally wrong think again.

    Premier Icon 2unfit2ride
    Subscriber

    Pass the Hobnobs…

    Premier Icon paulosoxo
    Subscriber

    (deserving or not but that’s another thread)

    No that’s this thread.

    Why is someone who earns £40k less entitled to a council house than someone who hasn’t ever worked?

    gusamc
    Member

    fig rolls please

    How did we ever get into this mess? – because we’ve had about 30 to 40 years where public service has migrated from life experienced people who wanted to make change for the better to a shower of self serving ‘professional’ (w)anchor politicians who are busy staying in power – even if that means giving people what they shouldn’t have.

    bigbloke
    Member

    Heaven forbid that someone in a council house betters themselves and has a career thats well paying. At least they actually pay their rent rather than the state paying it for them or subsidising it meaning the money paid is actually coming from outside of the system. Better than a lot of the council tenants that sit on their arses couldn’t care less about their houses and live off the subsidies available to them .

    druidh
    Member

    Why stop there? Up and down the country, there are thousands of larger council homes now occupied by one (usually elderly) resident. Meanwhile, there aren’t enough of these houses for families. If it’s based on need, there should be some rebalancing of provision against requirement.

    bigbloke
    Member

    Druidh…..not completely true, my in laws neighbour lost his mother n father and now has been told he is being rehoused as he is not eligiable to live there now (2bed bungalow).

    mrmo
    Member

    i guess the question is what is the point of council housing? there was a time when council usually meant good houses and good locations, there were qualifying criteria that kept the dossers out. Now council housing means that you need to be a single mum on benefits to stand a chance.

    So do we want sink estates or do we want people to have decent homes and be paying sensible money for them? Maybe we should be looking at controlling private rented accommodation to ensure a level playing field in terms of prices and conditions.

    Junkyard
    Member

    surely we want role models of how to be successful embedded in the communities of council housing estates so the residents have something to aspire to.

    Surely Tories would want to force them to buy them rather than move?
    Perhaps we should just build some more?

    How many have been sold? Bets its about the same as the shortage

    enfht
    Member

    Didn’t Ken Livingstone’s best mate Lee Jasper live in a 90pw Council House out of “principle”?

    The government should incentivise them to buy their properties by offering huge subsidies…

    mrmo
    Member

    The government should incentivise them to buy their properties by offering huge subsidies…

    I think it is only fair to offer those subsidises to those in the private sector as well….

    mrmo – sounds like a master plan… privatise council housing?

    Zulu-Eleven
    Member

    I think the question becomes why is “council house rent” so widely off the mark from “private rents”

    either council house rents are far too low, or the rent tribunals/assessment committees are not doing their job in pegging a “fair rent”

    b r
    Member

    An estimated 160,000 tenants sub-let their homes, which is not currently an offence.

    This bothers me far more than the posters’ headline, where are these people living?

    DrRSwank
    Member

    Higher earners pay plenty of tax so are down right entitled to such perks.

    As a higher rate tax earner myself I’ve always wanted to see a scheme where my tax input was recognised. Perhaps a certificate telling me how many scroungers I now own?

    There are too many people out there that expect something for nothing – “my life didn’t work out so subsidise me” types. And it’s usually these people whinging about the state of those that earn a wage.

    “Benefits” of any shape are benefits. They’re not a god given right. And I get annoyed at the reverse elitism shown by the dole bleaters.

    konabunny
    Member

    Point of order: at what gross annual income do people start to pay the top rate of tax?

    Maybe we should be looking at controlling private rented accommodation to ensure a level playing field in terms of prices and conditions.

    Rent control is a terrible idea in theory and in practice. Have a read up on what happened in NYC in the late 70s/early 80s when private sector rents weren’t allowed to rise in order to cover maintenance of the buildings. The current system is plagued by scams e.g. http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/celebrity/faye-dunaway-evicted-from-manhattan-flat-20110805-1ie98.html

    And WTF does a “level playing field” mean anyway?

    Junkyard
    Member

    I think the question becomes why is “council house rent” so widely off the mark from “private rents”

    Its was their job to provide social housing to those who could least afford it.

    either council house rents are far too low, or the rent tribunals/assessment committees are not doing their job in pegging a “fair rent”

    Or possibly when you remove greed and the need for massive personal profit from capitalism it is cheaper

    Happy New year and same old same old eh 😉

    stevewhyte
    Member

    All i know is that we need more council housing and less private landlords. Why should we all be making privae landlord rich by paying the rent through taxation.

    No question priority for social housing should be on those who cannot get into any other type of housing, so that excludes 40% tax payers for sure.

    Labour politicians and trade union leaders have to live somewhere.

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Subscriber

    surely after they hit athreshold they should be given the choice of buying the house

    It’s this which has led to the shortage of council housing in the first place though.

    joeegg
    Member

    A friend of mine rented out his council house while he went and lived with his son.He got caught but kept the house.
    He’s now put his name down in a different borough for a council flat. hoping to rent it out when he goes out to Spain in the new year.
    The rental income will more than the cover the rent he has to pay in Spain.

    don simon
    Member

    He’s now put his name down in a different borough for a council flat. hoping to rent it out when he goes out to Spain in the new year.

    As long as he doesn’t start bleating when he’s caught, go for it.

    mudshark
    Member

    Higher earners pay plenty of tax so are down right entitled to such perks.

    No we need them to pay for all the poor people, if everyone had subsidized where would we be? Poorer and the higher earners would just have to pay even more tax which they’d probably moan about….

    Edit – all council housing should be in cheaper areas, sell off the expensive stock and by several houses for each one sold. Sorted.

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    It’s a very complex issue, and as such, many on here simply aren’t qualified to comment on it. 😀

    Seriously though; as mentioned, someone earning over a hundred thousand pounds a year is paying a lot of tax on their earnings, which in turn is helping to ‘subsidise’ their own housing, surely? IE, people earning less aren’t ‘subsidising’ their housing as much as they are themselves?

    And to what extent is council housing actually ‘subsidised’? Is it not more of an issue that private rents are overinflated? Social housing is ‘non-profit’, whereas private housing is most definitely for profit.

    Then there’s the moral argument of people inhabiting housing at low rents, when they can clearly afford to rent or buy privately, meaning that other more ‘deserving’ people are left without housing/have to rent from private landlords costing the nation even more money etc..

    The worst are those freeloading scum (often foreigners) who live in massive houses at taxpayers expense, yet don’t actually work….

    allthepies
    Member

    surely we want role models of how to be successful embedded in the communities of council housing estates so the residents have something somewhere to aspire to rob.

    FTFY 😉

    tron
    Member

    We haven’t got enough council houses for the people who really need them.

    Council rents are low, the properties are usually good – generally well built, well insulated, double glazed and well maintained.

    In an ideal situation, we’d have plenty of council houses and the quality of them would force private landlords to raise their game.

    The way things are at the moment, I can’t see any quick solution to the problem without prodding the people who are able to get by without subsidised housing to go on and do it.

    Long term, you’d aim to build more council houses and build more housing stock in general. But that will pull down house prices, increase mortgage holders LTVs and make the government about as popular as Gary Glitter in a Jungle Gym.

    Zulu-Eleven
    Member

    Is it not more of an issue that private rents are overinflated?

    Yep, couldn’t agree more – primarily overinflated by the fact we’re artificially propping up the market with housing benefit – taxpayers money being given to private landlords, ‘king ridiculous.

    take that away, and the private market rents will have to fall back in line with affordability. free market and all that 😉

    CaptJon
    Member

    It strikes me all of the housing market is stuffed, not just social/council housing. I’m part of a generation that will only be able to afford a house once my parents die. There simply aren’t enough houses in place people want to live. The are two solutions to that problem a) build more houses in these places, or b) make the places where there is decent housing stock better areas to live in. I can’t see either happening any time soon.

    edit – basically agreeing with tron

    don simon
    Member

    There simply aren’t enough houses in place people want to live.

    Or buy in a less desirable area. Resolving a couple of problems in one fell swoop, repopulating areas, reducing the need for new stock and getting yourself on the property ladder. 😉

    Premier Icon cloudnine
    Subscriber

    If you earned £100k why in hell would you even want to live on a council estate

    CaptJon
    Member

    Live amongst the working class, Don? No thank you. 😉

    SBrock
    Member

    If you earned £100k why in hell would you even want to live on a council estate

    That baffles me too????

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    primarily overinflated by the fact we’re artificially propping up the market with housing benefit – taxpayers money being given to private landlords, ‘king ridiculous.

    One of the problems where i live, is that so many properties have ben acquired under the Right To Buy scheme, that the local authority are now paying twice as much or more for people to live in exactly the same type of properties that council tenants live in. Insane.

    RTB was a massive scam by Thatcher to temporarily swell the public coffers so that she could then use the money to reduce taxes for high earners. Disgusting. The money raised shooduv bin used to build more social housing. But local authorities weren’t allowed to use the money in this way, so we ended up with the situation we’re now in.

    RTB cooduv bin a really good thing for Britain, had it bin managed properly. The money raised shooduv only bin used to build/renovate/develop social housing, and there shoodiv bin put in place restrictions on the sales of homes bought under this scheme, to try to discourage and prevent the rampant greed we saw where people sold their properties at great profit. You can’t blame people for wanting to make a pound, but had sales bin restricted in terms of how much profit could be made, we’d have not seen the massive level of sell-off and the subsequent overinflation of the housing market. If people selling their RTB property were penalised for selling quickly, or forced to pay back a proportion of the profit to the state, then this wooduv helped prevent the mess we’re in now.

    Par example:

    Sell within 5 years = 50% of profit given back to the State.
    Sell within 10 years =40% of profit given back to the State.

    Etc.

    Instead, after just 3 years, people were able to keep all the profits for themselves. So, the State ultimately subsidised the private housing market, many people made an awful lot of money, and gave very little back.

    Fantastic.

    don simon
    Member

    I was thinking about somewhere like this.
    http://www.urbexforums.co.uk/showthread.php/8739-Potters-Manor-House-Crowborough-June-2010
    I believe it’s in the village of Crowborough in East Sussex, I can’t think of anything less desirable than living down south.

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    If you earned £100k why in hell would you even want to live on a council estate

    This does perplex me somewhat, but round here there are private housing blocks in amongst the council houses. Meaning we have a curious mix of some very wealthy and very poor people living cheek-by jowl.

    It does mean that mugging is targeted at those who look like they’ve got a few quid, meaning tatty potto scum like me are relatively safe from such crime, so that’s one plus point….

    Zulu-Eleven
    Member

    One of the problems where i live, is that so many properties have ben acquired under the Right To Buy scheme, that the local authority are now paying twice as much or more for people to live in exactly the same type of properties that council tenants live in. Insane.

    Which is just my point – why don’t we just say “no” – if there is going to be an input of taxpayers money, then the taxpayer should name the price- it should only be at the same rate as we charge council tenants, we’re artificially propping up the market by offering to pay whatever is asked for, and people renting on the open market cannot afford open market rents, as they are artificially jacked up by housing benefit – thats not a free market IMO.

    RTB cooduv bin a really good thing for Britain, had it bin managed properly. The money raised shooduv only bin used to build/renovate/develop social housing,

    Do you know what Fred – you and I are completely in agreement on this point, that was a huge error. RTB was a fantastic way to release capital, but that capital should have gone back into replacing the stock, no doubt about it.

    don simon
    Member

    as they are artificially jacked up by housing benefit – thats not a free market IMO.

    How does that work? Isn’t there a maximum housing benefit allowance?

    Bunch of snobs! I grew up on a couple of council estates, much nicer than the shit hole private area i currently live in.

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