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Local Housing Allowance

Question for Department for Work and Pensions

UIN HL7749, tabled on 6 April 2022

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the number of renters unable to cover rents as a result of the freezing of the Local Housing Allowance rate.

Answered on

22 April 2022

Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates determine the maximum housing support for Housing Benefit and Universal Credit claimants in the private rented sector. LHA rates are not intended to meet all rents in all areas.

In April 2020 we increased LHA rates to the 30th percentile of local rents, costing nearly £1 billion and providing 1.5 million claimants with £600 more in housing support, on average over 2020-21, than they would have otherwise received.

LHA rates have been maintained at their increased levels in 2021-22 and will remain at those levels for 2022-23, so that everyone who benefitted from the increase will continue to do so.

A claimant’s ability to cover their rental costs will be unique to the individual. For those who require additional help with housing costs Discretionary Housing Payments are available from local authorities (LAs). Since 2011 we have provided almost £1.5 billion to LAs to help support people who face a shortfall in meeting their rental housing costs.