Response to reports on social housing, lodgers and sub-letting.
A spokesperson from the Department for Communities and Local Government said:
“It is entirely lawful and sensible for social tenants to take in a lodger, provided they tell their landlord.
“But we have no time for the criminal fraudsters who rip off the system, by moving out of their taxpayer-subsidised social home and renting out the property on the side. Such welfare cheats are earning thousands of pounds of profit by exploiting the subsidised rent, and are denying a social home to those in genuine need. Fraudsters doing this are costing the taxpayer as much as £900 million a year, and we are clamping down on it.
“The Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 recently received Royal Assent, to tackle fraudulent sub-letting in social housing. We have also launched a £9.5 million targeted fund to support locally-led efforts to tackle the tenancy cheats. This backs up the greater powers to the police and councils to tackle this type of fraud.”