MORE than 4,500 households in Wirral will be hit by the government’s controversial “bedroom tax”, according to new council figures.
Bedroom tax, which will be imposed from April, will see council or housing association tenants losing a percentage of their benefits if they are deemed to have a “spare” bedroom.
They will lose 14% for one extra bedroom and 25% for two or more extra bedrooms, losing an average of £14 a week – or £16 per household.
The change, imposed as part of the Welfare Reform Bill, does not affect pensioners and campaigners are calling on the government to also make disabled people exempt.
Wirral residents who are likely to be affected have been sent a letter by the council to explain what the changes will mean for them.
A spokesman for Wirral council said: “The letters told residents what information the council currently held about their household and property and how their housing benefit was likely to be affected.
“It also set out what options they might want to consider to offset the effects of any reduction in housing benefit.
“In some cases we may be able to assist households with specific problems.
“If residents have not already contacted the council they are urged to do so at the earliest opportunity.”
Last week work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith insisted working families in areas like Wirral could not “afford the luxury of having spare bedrooms”.