The overriding aim of the welfare benefit measures in the Bill, including changes to Support for Mortgage Interest and reductions in social housing rents, is to reduce expenditure and “help to achieve a more sustainable welfare system.” A related aim is to support efforts to increase employment and “support the policy of rewarding hard work while increasing fairness with working households.” The welfare/housing measures include:
- Lowering the benefit cap threshold and varying it between London and the rest of the UK
- Limiting support through Child Tax Credits/Universal Credit
- A four year benefits freeze
- The abolition of Employment and Support Allowance Work-Related Activity Component
- Replacing Support for Mortgage Interest with Loans for Mortgage Interest
- Reducing social housing rent levels by 1% in each year for four years from 2016-17.