Can I charge My son Rent if he lives in my house and receiving ESA ? — Scope | Disability forum
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Can I charge My son Rent if he lives in my house and receiving ESA ?

Hi Everyone.
1,I am retired 68 years old and own my own home,I do not receive any benefits.
2,My 36 year old son lives with me and occupies 1 bedroom.
3,My son receives ESA (not support group) and receives about £400 per month which goes towards his needs including the majority on food.
4,I receive a State pension.
5,Can I approach my local authority and tell them that I am going to start charging my son rent and is he entitled to apply to the local authority for housing benefit?
Thank you.

Comments

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 24,731 Disability Gamechanger
    HI,

    I'm one of the community champions here on scope and i'm here to help and advise others.

    I'm afraid your son will not be able to claim for help with the rent while he lives with you because you are classed as a member of close family.



  • monkeybrains2525
    monkeybrains2525 Member Posts: 9 Listener
    Thank you Poppy.
  • monkeybrains2525
    monkeybrains2525 Member Posts: 9 Listener
    Hi Poppy,If I was to move out of my home and rent the house to my son with a legal tenancy agreement It looks like I could rent the property to my son and he could apply for housing benefit....correct? Thank you Poppy.
  • Ripples
    Ripples Member Posts: 189 Pioneering
    @monkeybrains2525 It may not be as simple as just issuing a legal contract as you would have to prove that it wasn't a contrived tenancy, this  could include  for example  a  deposit having to be put  in to a recognised rent deposit scheme, a  current gas safety certificate, evidence of rental payments, utility bills in his name.  You could be liable for tax on income from a rented property and any future sale of a property which isn't your main residence.  Then we come to your son who you say is receiving legacy  ESA  which is in the WRA group?  I think I am right in saying he cannot make   a new claim for Housing Benefit he would have to make a claim for Universal Credit  which means he would be paid by Universal Credit monthly his ESA would be migrated to Universal Credit and instead he would be claiming Limited Capability  For Work (LCW)  Your son would only be entitled to one bedroom so if your house has more than one bedroom then he would be subject to the spare  room subsidy, ( commonly called the bedroom tax). Be aware DWP can check to see whose name is on a land registry they are also linked  closely to HMRC so your son would have to declare that the property is owned by a relative for transparency.
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 24,731 Disability Gamechanger
    @Ripples is partly correct with the advice. Renting to your son and your son claiming for help with the rent isn't as easy as you think. If you're thinking of moving out just so that he can claim for help with the rent then be aware that he could be refused and they may think it's a contrived tenancy. As he was also a former non dependent then it could be very difficult to prove otherwise.

    The advice given about the bedroom tax isn't correct because bedroom tax only applies to those living in social housing, it doesn't apply to those renting privately.

    The local housing allowance rates will apply here and he will be entitled to the 1 bedroom rate. You can check here by putting your post code in to see what that rate is for your local area. https://lha-direct.voa.gov.uk/

    Also new claims for housing benefit are no longer possible in any area unless a person is claiming a severe disability premium in another benefit. If they are not then they would need to claim Universal Credit for help with the rent. Based on the amount of ESA he's receiving then he's not claiming any SDP so he would need to claim UC for help with the rent. As he's not in the Support Group then his claim would be Income related which will mean it will transfer to UC and be paid as 1 monthly payment.


  • Ripples
    Ripples Member Posts: 189 Pioneering
    edited January 2020
    I am grateful to poppy for pointing out that the term  'bedroom tax ' isn't applied to private rentals although they all follow the same under occupancy rules and the net  effect is the same whatever you call  it and as we have both said your son will only be paid  a percentage of the eligible rent for which he qualifies

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 24,731 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 2020
    Ripples said:
    I am grateful to poppy for pointing out that the term  'bedroom tax ' isn't applied to private rentals although they all follow the same under occupancy rules and the net  effect is the same whatever you call  it and as we have both said your son will only be paid  a percentage of the eligible rent for which he qualifies


    Sorry but that's still not exactly correct. For someone that lives in a social housing property if they are claiming a means tested benefit like ESA or UC and they have no earned Income they will receive 100% housing element and all of their rent is covered where ever they live in the country BUT if they have spare bedrooms then the rent will be reduced accordingly as you mentioned here.

    For those renting privately then the rent is based on the broad rental market for the area in which they live. This means that a single person over the age of 35 will be entitled to the 1 bedroom rate of LHA BUT this will differ depending on which area you live. If someone is living up North then the rent for privately rented properties is very often much less than it is for some parts of the country further down South, having lived in both parts myself over the years i know the difference between the 2. You will only receive the amount based on your circumstances but the deductions you mentioned above don't apply to those renting privately. As explained here in this link. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/understanding-local-housing-allowances-rates-broad-rental-market-areas

    For these purposed the same rules apply to those claiming housing benefit and housing element.

    Either way, the son is going to find it very difficult,  to claim any help for the rent whether they are living with the parent or renting a house from them.

  • Ripples
    Ripples Member Posts: 189 Pioneering
     We are going over the  same old ground, the end result is the same if you are judged to be living in a property that has more bedrooms than you need WHETHER you are renting privately or through social housing you will not get the  full housing element. It is enough that we disagree and I leave it there.
  • monkeybrains2525
    monkeybrains2525 Member Posts: 9 Listener
    Thank you to Poppy and Ripples for your valuable information and input.

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