By David Rhodes and Mark Bevan
This report sets out the results of research on private landlords and letting agents that had experience of letting to someone claiming Housing Benefit (HB) under the Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rules. It forms part of a two-year review of the LHA system of HB carried out by the Department for Work and Pensions following its national rollout in April 2008. The research focused on understanding the experiences of, and views on, the LHA, from the perspective of the people and organisations involved in the supply of private rented accommodation and to assess whether any new issues were arising under the LHA national rollout model that were not apparent in the LHA Pathfinder evaluation.
Overall, the findings from this research are very similar to those of the Pathfinder evaluation. However, there were some key differences between LHA policy in the Pathfinders and that in the national rollout. This research has provided insight into this along with further detail on issues around landlords’ portfolio development, letting strategies and long-term financial planning.