Do you receive Universal Credit?
If the amount you pay in rent goes up or down, while you are receiving Universal Credit, you must tell the Universal Credit office. We cannot do this for you. You must tell them straight away to make sure you get the right amount each month. If you are overpaid you will have to repay the money.
You should also tell the Universal Credit office about any other changes to your circumstances. Find out how to report changes
Roll Out of Universal Credit
The roll out of Universal Credit is being suspended with effect from 31 December 2017. This means that new claimants must claim Housing Benefit after that date. Claims for Universal Credit, for some single claimants, will be accepted from April 2018 but couples and families who live in Tendring will not be eligible to claim Universal Credit until July 2018.
More information about Universal Credit including a benefits calculator can be found at www.gov.uk/universal-credit.
Universal Credit Two Children Rule
If you claim the wrong benefit you may not get the full amount that you’re entitled to.
If you have 1, 2 or no children or qualifying young persons you can make a new claim for Universal Credit.
If you have 3 or more children or qualifying young persons you cannot make a claim for Universal Credit, unless:
- You have received Universal Credit within the previous six months and are re-claiming, or
- You are making a new claim as a single person within one month of a previous joint claim ending, because you are no longer a couple.
If you are a new Universal Credit claimant with more than two children or qualifying young persons, you will also need to apply separately for Child Tax Credit, Housing Benefit and any other benefits that you may be entitled to.
Alternative Payment Arrangements
Universal Credit is paid monthly to encourage budgeting skills and help get ready for work. However, if you are having financial difficulties you may be able to receive additional support such as Alternative Payment Arrangements (APAs).
Depending on your circumstances, you could get an APA to:
- get your rent paid directly to your landlord
- get paid more frequently than once a month
- receive split payments, if you’re part of a couple
If you would like your rent paid directly to us, please contact the housing rents team
Paying Your Rent
If you have any questions about your rent payments or amount, please contact the housing rents team as soon as possible at RentsTeam@tendringdc.gov.uk. We want to help you avoid getting into debt. We can work with you to help you understand your finances and where your money is spent. You can arrange a confidential appointment by contacting your arrears officer or the rents team.
We will do all we can to help you remain in your home. We may be able to help with financial support such as discretionary housing payments and exceptional hardship payments for rent and council tax costs. You would need to talk to your arrears officer or rents team to find out if you can claim any extra financial support.