“Devastating figures released over this summer show that £9.3 billion of public money is paid through housing benefit directly into the pockets of private landlords.”
Jeremy Corbyn, 7 September 2016
£9.3 billion in Housing Benefit spending was for payments to private sector renters in 2014/15, if you adjust for inflation. This is the latest year there are confirmed figures for.
Technically this doesn’t go directly to private landlords. The housing charity Shelter says that most private renters get the money paid into their bank account.
By contrast, Housing Benefit is usually paid directly to the landlord when it comes to council or housing association homes.
In the same year £9.4 billion was paid in Housing Benefit on behalf of housing association tenants, and £6.1 billion to councils in their role as landlords. So payments to private tenants made up 37% of all Housing Benefit payments that year.
It’ll be a similar proportion in 2016/17, according to government forecasts.
This is slightly higher than the proportion of Housing Benefit recipients, who make up 31% of all recipients. They account for a greater share of Housing Benefit payments by value because they receive more on average: £110 per week, compared to £89 per week for tenants in the social rented sector.
This factcheck is part of a roundup of Prime Minister's Questions. Read the roundup.
Can you help protect this election from the influence of bad information? Support Full Fact
This election, clear, accurate facts won’t always be a guarantee. False and harmful claims are spread every day by our public figures and media. Intentional or not, they have the power to shape the choices we make. We all deserve better than that.
That’s why we’re fighting to keep this election more honest and accountable. And we can’t do it without you. In a fast-paced campaign, our supporters mean we can hold all candidates to the same three principles: get your facts right, back them up with evidence, and correct your mistakes.
Just a small monthly donation keeps us scrutinising the most harmful false claims around the clock, and challenging the people who make them.
If you, like us, don’t want your vote to be influenced by bad information, can you help out?