How we’re tackling rent debt
We know life isn’t always plain sailing, and things don’t always go to plan, so if you ever find yourself struggling to pay your rent, we’re here to support you and talk you through your options.
We know life isn’t always straight forward, and things don't always go to plan, so if you're experiencing difficulties paying your rent, please let us know as soon as you can.
You can work out what financial help you may be entitled to, by using the government’s benefits calculator.
Citizens Advice and National Debtline offer free confidential advice and support.
Universal Credit is a payment to support living costs. It's available for people who are out of work or on a low income. It replaces several other benefits, including Housing Benefit.
You may qualify for help towards paying your rent through Housing Benefit, which is paid to us by your local authority.
Housing Benefit is available to help people in low-paid employment and those who are not in work. It’s very important that you claim this as soon as you can. Any entitlement will start from the day you submit your claim.
To find out if you are eligible to make a claim, please contact your local authority. When contacting them, you’ll need to provide them with all the information they need to help assess your needs.
You are responsible for telling your local authority when your circumstances change and ensuring that your rent is paid.
In special circumstances, local authorities can make a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) for extra support with your rent. If the amount you receive from Universal Credit or Housing Benefit is not enough to meet your rent, you can apply for a DHP.
If you have rent debt that is preventing you from moving to a more affordable home, or you want to move but can't afford the rent deposit, rent in advance, or moving costs, your local authority may be able to help with DHP.
Each application is assessed based on the applicant's individual circumstances - to find out more visit your local authority's website and look for discretionary payments.
There is a limit on the total amount of benefit that most people aged 16 to 66 can receive. This is called the benefit cap.
If you are affected by this, your Housing Benefit payment will go down, and the total amount of benefits you receive will not be more than the cap level. If you're already receiving Universal Credit, the reduction will be taken from the housing element (no reduction will be made to the childcare element).
If you are a pensioner, you will not be affected. Take a look at the benefit cap calculator which will help you to estimate how much you may lose.
Bedroom Tax (also known as removal of the spare room subsidy or under occupancy charge) is a change to the Housing Benefit, or Housing Element of Universal Credit entitlement. It means that your payment for housing will be reduced if you are deemed to have a spare bedroom/s. And, this will affect you if you are of working age (between 16 – 66 years old).
Having one spare bedroom means the benefit, on which your housing payment is calculated, will be reduced by 14%.
If you have two or more spare bedrooms, this means that it will be reduced by 25%.
Civil Legal Advice - Check to see if you are able to get free and confidential advice as part of legal aid.
StepChange Debt Charity - a registered charity offering free, confidential advice and support to anyone who is worried about debt.
EntitledTo - find out exactly what tax credits and benefits you are entitled to by filling in this online form.
National Debtline - free debt advice and support for people with money worries and debt problems.
The Money Charity - a national money education charity which aims to help people handle their money well.
AdviceUK - AdviceUK is the UK's largest support network for free, independent advice centres.
Christians Against Poverty - Free local services, run through local churches, to help tackle poverty.
Shelter – Help and guidance on dealing with rent arrears
Our Community Skills team offer a wide range of support, including helping you access training, develop new skills and find a new job, all with the goal to boost your monthly income. The team offer personal, 1:1 support to help you explore new opportunities and determine the right path for you.