There are many news stories appearing on-line about a new local housing allowance calculator available on Windows (not on mac). It is being described as an “inexpensive” solution to calculating LHA rates and it calculates rates for claims before and after April 2011.

The cost of the software is £125.00 + VAT and I wonder if anyone can tell me what this does that can’t be done for free on-line?

If you use the valuation office website cleverly, you can check any current LHA rate for every local authority and you can now shadow the changes as if they were post April 2011 alongside these rates so as to compare what the rate would be if the changes were now implemented. The valuation office are producing these shadows for each current month (rather than as previously where there was just one example for June 2010).

No piece of software can actually tell you right now what the rates will be in April and beyond until the actual rents used for the calculation are published (which change every month) and therefore it seems the software is simply predicting the rates relative to the current month. This is just the same as the shadow function on the VO website.

If anyone can tell me what the software does differently to warrant the £150.00 (inc. VAT) I would be very interested!

See our calculate your LHA rate link on our local housing allowance website which has all the links needed. to perform your own calculations for free.