Under current arrangements Housing Benefit (HB) is paid to the landlord rather than the tenant in the great majority of cases. However, along with 5 other social security benefits, HB is being incorporated into Universal Credit (UC). The housing component of UC is based on the present system of HB but simplified. However, because UC is paid as a single sum of money, the housing component will be paid to the tenant and not directly to the landlord.
The Direct Payment Demonstration Projects (DPDP) were established in 6 local authority areas in 2012 to test the direct payment of Housing Benefit to tenants living in social housing.
The projects ran from June 2012 to December 2013.
DWP commissioned the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research at Sheffield Hallam University, in partnership with the University of Oxford and Ipsos MORI, to monitor and evaluate the projects. The aim of the research was to learn lessons from DPDP to provide feedback into the implementation of the projects and the design of Universal Credit.
The evaluation began in November 2011 and ended in December 2014.
This final package of evaluation reports consists of:
- an overarching learning report, which summarises the main findings from all the strands of research and analysis at the 18 month stage of the projects
- 18 months rent account analysis exercise
- stage 3 survey of tenants
The government is simplifying the benefit system to make it easier to move into work and ensure that there are as few disruptions as possible when moving into employment.
The Direct Payment Demonstration Projects have helped to ensure that the correct mechanisms, support and financial tools are available for both landlords and claimants.
Previous Direct Payment Demonstration Projects evaluation reports
Direct Payment Demonstration Projects: 12 month stage reports
Direct Payments Demonstration Projects: learning the lessons, 6 months in
Direct Payments Demonstration Projects: findings from a baseline survey of tenants in 5 project areas in England and Wales