Feeling the pinch

Mark Simmonds is not getting much sympathy after claiming that MPs’ expenses make it ‘intolerable’ to live in London but has he also revealed a deeper truth about our housing system?

The MP for Boston and Skegness resigned as a minister on Monday and will leave parliament at the next election after claiming that he can’t find anywhere to rent in the capital on his £35,000 a year housing allowance.

Simmonds and his family do not exactly sound like they are among the ‘housing pinched’. These are the 1.6 million households identified in a report by the Resolution Foundation as spending more than 50 per cent of their net household income (after tax and benefits) on their rent or mortgage.

-> Read the rest of this post on Inside Edge, my blog for Inside Housing


One Comment on “Feeling the pinch”

  1. Articles on the rate of rent in London, have said that average waged workers have been squeezed out of London rents by the super-rich investing in property all around the city.

    But as the 650 MPs share between them around £100 million (2013 figure) in expenses, including a £20,100 (2013 figure) second home allowance, plus all the expenses of plate, fork, spoon etc and a few grand for family to stop over in their extra bedroom, then this MP must be very incompetnent in getting the huge expenses.

    When council tax was devolved to councils, lost by me 100 per cent council tax benefit. Yet from the 75 per cent of tax from people we all pay, in or out of work and however long we live, from stealth taxes and VAT, even on food, I contribute to this MP’s council tax bill.

    Wealthy women MPs kept their pension payout at 60 from 2012, lost to us plebs since 2013.

    By the rise in retirement age, women born from 1953 and men born from 1951, will get massively reduced state pension or lost it for life altogether.

    Housewives, divorcees, widows and poorest workers, all end up with nothing at all for life.


    By rise in retirement age, pensioners short of a pension are liable for Bedroom Tax.

    The Tories call that tax a Spare Room Subsidy, when in fact this should be the name of the MPs’ second home allowance and taxed as a benefits in kind perk extra to their salary, as all expenses?

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