Headrow can offer help and advice.
It is important to pay your rent on time. However, if your financial circumstances change - such as loss of employment, ill health, a family crisis etc., and you have difficulties paying your rent it is important that you contact us as soon as possible. We can check you are receiving all the benefits you are entitled to and work out the best way of paying off your debt.
Don't ignore your rent arrears and let your debt build up. If we know you are having difficulties, we can look at ways to help you. We can give you advice and support and make sure that the need for any action against you might be avoided, but we need to understand what is wrong. Talk to Headrow - if you don't act, we won't know what is wrong and we won't be able to help you.
Why is paying your rent important to Headrow?
It is important that we collect every penny that is owed to us in rent. It allows us to repair and improve existing homes and to build much needed new ones. It also helps us to keep rent increases down because we don't have to make as much provision for bad debt.
You may be able to get Housing Benefit to pay some or all of your rent. If you receive Income Support, you are automatically entitled to Housing Benefit. If you don't receive Income Support, you may still qualify for Housing Benefit. The amount will depend on your:
- how many people live with you
- personal circumstances
If you think that you might be entitled to receive Housing Benefit, Headrow can provide you with the forms that you will need to make your claim. We can also help you fill in these forms. You can also request claim forms yourself directly from the local council's Housing Benefits Department. Contact details for the Housing Benefits Department can be found in your telephone book under your local council or here.
You must let us know if you have made a claim for Housing Benefit as this will affect how we deal with arrears arising while you wait for your claim to be processed. We are aware that Housing Benefit claims can take a number of weeks to process - but it is still your responsibility to chase up processing of the claim. You must also ensure that you provide all the required details in order for your form to be processed.What will happen if you don't talk to us or make an arrangement to clear the arrears?
Where rent is unpaid and people do not show any commitment to addressing the problem then we have no option but to take firm action. Ultimately, we will begin Court proceedings.
This will result in some or all of the following:
- Attending court to explain why you have not paid your rent
- A court order requiring you to pay your rent and arrears
- Your name on the register of County Court judgements. - This means that you may not be able to get credit, a mortgage or another tenancy.
If you don't pay your rent you could lose your home (eviction). That's why it's so important to keep up to date with payments. We don't want you to lose your home, and that's why we'll do all we can to help you. BUT - please remember, we take a firm line with people who refuse to pay their rent and we won't hesitate to take court action for repossession and eviction where necessary.
Thankfully, it needn't come to that if you talk to us. We have staff available, including our Income Generation Officer who can offer help and advice regarding your arrears. We can:
- Give you time to sort things out
- Most importantly work out a plan for you to pay off the arrears in good time using amounts you can afford
Should you require any further information please contact our Income Generation Officer on 0113 2504337 ext: 4106 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
There are a number of other ways you can receive help and advice about rent.
Your local Citizen's Advice Bureau (CAB) - details of your nearest CAB office will be listed in the local telephone book and Yellow Pages. You will receive free, independent and confidential advice.
Christians Against Poverty (CAP) - a charity, which provides advice and help to people in financial difficulties.
National Debt Line - a freefone telephone service offering advice and support with debt problems. Telephone 0808 808 4000.
The Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS) - offers free help with debt problems. CCCS will help you to organise your financial budget and prioritise your debts. The service is available from Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm.