Thousands of wealthy professionals are living in taxpayer-subsidised council houses despite earning more £100,000 a year, official figures have disclosed.
Up to 5,000 people with six-figure salaries – including transport union boss Bob Crow – are enjoying the benefit of paying cheap rents for council homes or properties let by housing associations.
Analysis by the Department for Communities and Local Government suggests that these rich tenants, who are in the top 5 per cent of all earners, are subsidised by about £4,200 each a year through the low rents that they pay.
Councils and housing associations which provide homes to needy tenants in return for rents below the market rate usually require applicants to pass a means test before allocating them housing.
However, after they move in, tenants do not usually have to declare any subsequent increase in their income, particularly as there is no national set of rules governing social housing. It means some people can live in council houses for decades while enjoying significant salary rises.
Largely, of course, they are the people who are part of the council housing allocation class. Those who are or have been councillors, on the housing associations themselves, the union leaders and the like.
Amazing how that happens really, isn’t it? Lee Jasper having a central London council house, Bob Crow, there’s an ex-Cabinet Minister (guess which party?), a Labour Peer (at least one). Those people who are part of the network that allocates valuable property get allocated valuable property.
Who would have thought it?