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Social landlord's new 'bedroom tax beating' development welcomed

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Social landlord's new 'bedroom tax beating' development welcomed

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Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Communities, Development

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A social landlord's new housing development which was designed to "beat the bedroom tax" has been welcomed by Wirral Borough Council.

Tenants like the Sant family have now moved into smaller and more affordable one or two-bedroom properties in Birkenhead to escape the government's controversial under-occupation policy.

Previously mum Louise, husband Jamie and 12-year-old Jordan were renting a larger, three-bedroom house, where they paid an extra £48 a month in bedroom tax.

Mrs Sant said: “I couldn’t have asked for anywhere better. It’s a dream come true for me and my family. We’ve now got a brand new home which will cost us less to heat, there is no bedroom tax to pay it and looks lovely. It’s absolutely perfect.”

Realising the bedroom tax was hitting smaller families, the Regenda Group changed its original plans for its Waverly Court development and concentrated on building 18 one and two-bed houses, bungalows and apartments instead.

Tracy Heyes, Regenda’s executive director of operations, said: “We know that a lot of families have fallen foul of the under-occupation charge through no fault of their own.

"As a result there is now a huge demand for smaller properties which are in very short supply. Waverley Court is a superb example of a housing association, a developer and a local authority working together to create stylish and affordable homes which meet a real need and help families to save money.”

Cllr George Davies, Wirral Borough Council’s cabinet member for neighbourhoods, housing and engagement, added: "We welcome this new initiative to deliver affordable housing in Wirral. This new development on Price Street, Birkenhead, is high-quality and a welcome addition to affordable housing provision, particularly as residents who have been affected by welfare reforms have already been able to downsize into the new properties.”

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