Sunday, 6 February 2022

Rishi Sunak the loan shark

Tory Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced an insultingly inadequate policy of offsetting soaring energy bills with paltry but mandatory £200 mini-loans for all domestic energy consumers, which then has to be paid back in instalments over the next five years.

The £200 will be automatically discounted from all household energy bills, whether customers want to be drawn into energy-debt or not, then Sunak's five £40 annual repayments will be added onto all energy bills, regardless of whether the bill-payer actually received the £200 discount or not!

Let's consider how this policy will work for students, people working their way out of poverty, people who get a home of their own after a period of homelessness, or couples who separate/divorce over the next five years, which obviously amounts to a very significant number of people.

Imagine a multi-occupancy house, with say five adults. They can be students in the final year of university, or people trying to work their way out of poverty by house-sharing to save rent.

The household receives a single £200 energy bill discount between the five individuals, but then the household splits up and the individuals get houses of their own (the students graduate, the workers go their separate ways).

One household with one energy bill becomes five households with five energy bills, mandating five sets of five £40 annual "repayments".

A £200 loan ends up requiring up to £1,000 in repayments is the kind of exploitation you'd expect from payday lenders and loan sharks.

Separating/divorcing couples will also be forced to repay up to double what they initially received when they were living together.

As for the recently homeless (street-sleepers, squatters, couch-surfers, hostel-dwellers) who find themselves a home of their own in the next few years, they'll be forced to make years of repayments on loans they never even received a penny of!

When it comes to people who are lucky enough to be living in comfortable housing situations for the foreseeable future, Sunak's misleadingly named "rebate" is just an ineffective and insulting 'sticking plaster on a severed limb' solution.

But when it comes to people in multiple occupancy homes, the working-poor, separating couples, people escaping the horror of homelessness, and others in insecure housing situations, Sunak's strategy is pure daylight robbery.

Of course Sunak and his millionaire Tory chums don't give a damn about the young, the working poor, the recently-homeless, or others in insecure housing situations, and when they devised this crackpot policy, they probably didn't even consider the implications for people they perceive to be lower than scum.

But neither do most of the over-privileged UK media commentariat, who, let's remember worked tirelessly to keep these malicious and economically illiterate Tories in power (because they were so utterly horrified at Corbyn's proposal that the wealthiest minority like them should pay a bit more tax, so life could be a bit fairer for the rest of us).

Of course the £billionaire-bankrolled Tories are going to keep legislating against the interests of the young, the poor, and the marginalised, and of course most of the over-privileged commentariat aren't going to hold these vile and vindictive Tories to account for it, because the majority of them are simply far too concerned with promoting their own class interests, to bother about those of us getting trampled and exploited at the bottom.

Don't forget to check out my other article detailing loads of other problems with Sunak's mandatory energy bill mini-loans.
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T Lawson said...

And all new houses built in the next few years will have a £40/yr 'levy' (i.e. tax) imposed even though no £200 was received.

l said...

I think you've got this one wrong Thomas.

In a HMO the energy bill should be in the name of the landlord, so the tenants won't have energy bills.

And in the unofficial HMOs, the 'happy family' shared houses under joint contracts, one of the tenants will be looking after the energy bill not give of them, they will get the discount and I can see how that might cause problems.

But I can't see a situation where all five of the tenants will be forced to take out one of these loans.

l said...

Oh I see, Martin seems to think it comes off every energy bill. Well, I not sure where he's getting that into from.. That would be pretty crazy if that happened.

Never liked Martin Lewis personally, he makes our he's sole kind of Robin Hood character yet kinda made millions basically repackaging the advice of his forum users who kindly gave it for free, well at least in the early days.

Barry Cameron said...

Plus VAT

Noisemonkey said...

I lived in an HMO and the bills were in the names of the tenants. Not sure where you got this idea from

Vivien Markham said...

And it could affect your your credit rating or mortgage application if you fall foul of this idea of repaying back 200.00 in energy repsyments.

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