Single Room Rent?

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  • #22840
    gshiels
    Participant

    We have a HB claim where the claimant is resident with the owner occupier.

    The property has 3 bedrooms and the owner rents 2 of the bedrooms to his tenant for £80.00 per week.

    One of our benefit assessors have assessed the claim based on the claimant requiring 2 rooms and the Rent Officer has provided a determination accordingly.

    However, I think that the rent should be restricted to a single room rent as the living room etc is shared.

    Is this correct – can we restrict the claim to a single room rent?

    I personally think this case should be treated under Rg9 as a contrived tenancy however I will look into this part further after I find out about the single room rent part.

    #9816
    Anonymous
    Guest

    If the claimant is single and under 25 surely you should be asking for a SRR as a matter of course, regardless of shared or sole-use rooms?

    #9817
    andyrichards
    Participant

    I do not see how you can restrict to single room rent unless the claimant is a young individual. If you think the RO decision is based on incorrect information about the use of the accommodation you could refer it back to the RO, but the claimant does not seem to be overaccommodated on the face of it.

    #9818
    Trevor Kenward
    Participant

    Single room rent only applies of course if claimant under 25. If not the Rent Service shoud value rthe accommodation and take into account the rooms(s) he needs in applying size criteria.

    #9819
    gshiels
    Participant

    Sorry, I should have said in my original post – the claimant is over 25.

    #9820
    andyrichards
    Participant

    I thought he was renting two rooms….?

    #9821
    Anonymous
    Guest

    So you are saying that you recognise the RO valuation in this case as being a higher amount than you would normally expect for shared or HMO accommodation? You were expecting something a bit lower. You therefore think the RO has possibly got it wrong, or perhaps the case was wrongly referred. So you are looking at maybe a redetermination request or a substitute determination. Is that right?

    The starting point should be the RO’s LRR valuation criteria as set out in the RO (HB Functions) (Scotland) Order 1997. Have a look at Para 4(2)(b) of Schedule 1 to the Order. It provides for an HMO-style LRR in a case where the claimant does not have the use of [b:331ea3c293]more than one [/b:331ea3c293]bedroom or living room. It sounds like your claimant does have the use of more than one bedroom/living room because the tenancy gives him/her two of the three bedrooms. Therefore, despite the shared bathroom etc, the LRR should (if required) be the normal two-room rate.

    The safeguard in cases like this is that the CRR, whch is a true valuation of the claimant’s individual accommodation, will only reflect the facilities the claimant has. Two rooms without a private bathroom/kitchen is not a lot better than two HMO bedsits and so the CRR ought to value it lower than a regular one-bed self-contained flat. If so, it may not be necessary for the RO to set an LRR at all.

    What exactly have you go from the RO: just a CRR, or CRR plus LRR?

    #9822
    gshiels
    Participant

    Hi Peter,

    Just check the ROD and we have a notional valuation for appropriate size and claim related rent which are the same.

    I am happy to accept the CRR figure as long as the claimant is entitled to the 2 rooms.

    I was just a bit confused about the required room level based on the circumstances of this claim as we don’t get many lodger type claims.

    Thanks

    #9823
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Well in that case the two-room CRR is fine. There is no need to restrict it to the HMO rate.

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