Restrictions on rent

Rent restrictions in the social rented sector

In April 2013 rules were introduced that set out the number of bedrooms Housing Benefit will pay for people of working-age who live in accommodation provided by a Housing Association e.g. Bron Afon, Monmouthshire Housing, Pobl or Melin.

Tenants who under-occupy their property will have their HB reduced by 14% for one spare room and 25% for two or more spare rooms.

One bedroom is allowed for each of the following:

  • every adult couple (married or unmarried).
  • any other adult aged 16 or over.
  • any two children of the same gender aged under 16.
  • any two children aged under 10.
  • any other child, (other than a child whose main home is elsewhere)
  • a carer or team of carers who provide the claimant, their partner, a disabled child* or non-dependant adult* with overnight care (providing they have a spare room for this purpose and as long as certain criteria are met).
  • A foster child/foster children (only one bedroom is allowed providing they have a spare room for this purpose. The foster-carers must be approved).
  • Any non-dependant in the armed forces who is temporarily absent from their home (as long as they intend to return home) e.g. grown up son or daughter living with their parents who is away on operations.
  • a couple* or disabled child who is unable to share a bedroom because of their severe disabilities as long as certain criteria are met.

* New rules were introduced from 1 April 2017 to allow an extra bedroom for these groups.

If you require any more information find out where can I get more advice here.

Local Housing Allowance

If you are renting a property or room from a private landlord Local Housing Allowance (LHA) is used to work out how much Housing Benefit you receive. A LHA rate is included in your claim which is based on the number of bedrooms allowed for the size of your household.

How much you will get?

Your Housing Benefit will be based on

  • your and your partner's savings (if you have one)
  • the LHA rate that applies to you /the rent you pay (if this is lower than the LHA rate).
  • the money you and your partner (if you have one) have coming in
  • your circumstances, such as your age, the ages and size of your family, whether you or any of your family are disabled, and whether anyone who lives with you could help with the rent.

Who will LHA apply to?

It will apply to claimants who rent from a private landlord.

It will not apply to you if

  • you are a housing association tenant
  • you have a tenancy that started before 1989, or
  • you live in a caravan, mobile home, hostel or house boat
  • the Rent Officer has decided that a substantial part of your rent is for board and attendance

LHA may not apply to you if you live in supported housing.

If you have been getting Housing Benefit since before 7 April 2008 LHA will only apply to you if you:

  • change address
  • have a break in your claim

What are the current LHA Rates?

LHA rates are set for different types of accommodation in each Broad Rental Market area (BRMA) by the Rent Officer Service. In Torfaen there is one BRMA which covers the borough boundaries exactly. The LHA rates from 1 April 2023 are as follows:

Local Housing Allowance Rates
Accommodation LHA Rates TorfaenLHA Rates Monmouthshire
Shared £54.00 £75.95
One Bed £87.45 £95.51
Two Bed £105.86 £126.58
Three Bed £120.82 £149.59
Four Bed £149.59 £178.36

If your Housing Benefit entitlement does not fully meet your rent and you are having difficulties meeting the shortfall you can apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment .

Further information is available in the:

Last Modified: 30/05/2023
For more information contact:

Customer Care Team

Tel: 01495 766430

Email: revs&

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