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Chamber and committees

Question reference: S6W-08239

  • Asked by: Elena Whitham, MSP for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley, Scottish National Party
  • Date lodged: 28 April 2022
  • Current status: Answered by Shona Robison on 11 May 2022


To ask the Scottish Government how much it (a) has spent on funding Discretionary Housing Payments (DHPs) in each year for which it has been responsible for doing so and (b) estimates it will spend on funding DHPs in the current financial year, all broken down by how much was in relation to (i) the removal of the spare room subsidy and (ii) other reasons, and what the (A) administrative costs for DHPs and (B) total value of DHPs made by local authorities was in each year from 2010-11 to 2021-22.


(a) Scotland has budgeted £429 million in total for Discretionary Housing Payments since DHPs were devolved in 2017 to the 2022-23 financial year. This is broken down into £349 million for mitigation of the bedroom tax and £80.4 million for mitigating the impact of other welfare reforms.

SG funding for DHPs 2017-18 to 2022-23









Bedroom Tax Budget








Other DHPs




£18.9m 1


£17.9m 2


Full Budget








1. Figure includes additional £8m of Covid-support funds

2. Figure includes £7m for additional benefit cap support

Note: These figures do not include administration funding

(b) (i) (ii) In 2022-23 it is estimated that the Scottish Government will spend £86m on DHPs. From this, £68.1 million is to mitigate the bedroom tax helping over 92,000 households in Scotland to sustain their tenancies. An additional £17.9 million mitigates against the damaging impact of other UK Government welfare cuts including the benefit cap and changes to the Local Housing Allowance rates.

From the £17.9m, £10m will be used to mitigate the benefit cap with the other £7.9m to be allocated to LHA and other non-welfare. We are unable to confirm the exact amounts allocated to each stream at present as allocations are ongoing.

(A) Since DHPs were devolved in 2017 the Scottish Government has provided local authorities with £1.2m in administration funding each year since 2017. In 2021-22 a further £256,255 was allocated to the administration funding as part of the roll-over of the ‘other’ underspend.

(B) The Scottish Government do not hold information on total value of DHPs made by local authorities each year pre 2013-14. Pre 2017 the funding was not broken down into bedroom tax or other. We do not yet have the final spending figures for 2021-22. It is, however, estimated that in 2021-22 there will be £71m for bedroom tax spend and £10.9m for DHP other spend.

Outturn (Spending) 2017-18 to 2020-21











Bedroom Tax Spend










DHP Other Spend










Total Spend










Note, some local authorities add some of their own funds for local priorities