If you live in a council or housing association property and claim Housing Benefit, your entitlement may be reduced if your home is considered too large for you. The use of size criteria for under occupation is widely known as 'the bedroom tax', although it is a reduction of benefit rather than a tax we isssue bills for. How many bedrooms am I allowed to have for Housing Benefit purposes? One bedroom for each adult or couple, One bedroom for any 2 children under 16 who are the same gender, One bedroom for any 2 children under 10 regardless of gender, One bedroom for any other child, One bedroom for any other person over the age of 16, for example older children, A bedroom for a non-resident carer is allowed where they provide overnight care to a person with a disability. The maximum number of bedrooms allowed for Housing Benefit is 4. Who is affected by under occupancy?If you are under occupying, your Housing Benefit will be reduced. The amount allowed for rent and any service charges will be reduced by: 14% for under occupying by 1 bedroom 25% for under occupying by 2 or more bedrooms What if my partner or I are over state pension credit age ?This change will not affect you if one member of a couple is over state pension credit age. I share care of my children with my ex-partner, are we both entitled to a room for them ?Where parents don’t live together and share the care of their children, the children will be treated as living with the parent who is responsible for them. For someone to be treated as responsible for a child, the child must normally be living with them. If a child spends equal amount of time in different households, or there is a question as to whom they normally live with, they will be treated as living with the person who is receiving Child Benefit for them. Can I get help to pay this shortfall?If there is a reason why you need to have an extra bedroom you could make an application for a Discretionary Housing Payment. This is a limited fund set up to assist people who need additional help with their housing costs. Each application is considered on an individual basis taking your personal and financial circumstances into account. Any such award is likely to be made on a short-term basis only.