Letter: Landlords' benefit

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The Independent Online
Sir: Mike Bolton ('Caught in the benefits trap'; Letters, 24 August) is wrong to believe that by only paying 'market rents' councils avoid benefiting landlords being paid sky-high rents.

This is not true, when the shortage of suitable housing for people on housing benefit is considered. This has allowed the market values for rents to increase substantially. The system therefore does result in taxpayers forking out large sums in housing benefit to pay for sky-high rents to landlords (even at 'market values').

I also find it sad that the argument for council-owned housing as a solution to this problem has hardly featured in this debate.

Yours faithfully



24 August