Coronavirus and rent payments

Coronavirus and rent payments

Keeping up with rent payments

As part of their package to protect renters, the Government has introduced a series of temporary changes and restrictions on landlords regaining possession of their property during the coronavirus pandemic.

These include:

  • Extending the minimum notice period to three months before proceedings for possession can take place 
  • Suspending all ongoing housing possession action (where possession proceedings started before the new regulations were introduced) for an initial 90 days.

 

We appreciate this is a difficult time for tenants, particularly people employed on zero hour contracts, or those who have lost their jobs or been furloughed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

However all tenants are still liable for rent and you should continue to pay this as usual. Rent is a priority debt and you could be at risk of eviction if you do not pay. Do not put your home at risk.


Advice and guidance

This is a challenging time for everyone, but it will come to an end, so if you are struggling it is important to take action now to ensure you don't face possession action when things return to normal.


Pay your rent from Universal Credit or Housing Benefit 

If you are struggling to pay your rent, you can ask to have your Universal Credit or Housing Benefit paid directly to your landlord. Universal Credit legislation has changed in response to Covid-19 and some legacy benefits have been affected. Information on this can be found at www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk


Social housing tenants

If you are a tenant of a registered social landlord, please get in touch with them if you are having any difficulties paying your rent. They will be able to provide you with extra support with debt, budgeting and any issues you are having with benefits.


Private rented sector

If you rent your home privately, we would urge you to contact your landlord or letting agent if you are struggling to pay your rent. Do not ignore letters from your landlord. Early conversations will benefit both you and your landlord. Speak to them about your situation and work together to agree an affordable repayment plan if you have fallen into rent arrears.


Check your benefit entitlement

Check your benefit entitlement and help to maximise your income by using one of these online calculators: 

Our Benefits Team will also be able to advise whether you qualify for additional help such as Discretionary Housing Payments or the Hardship Fund, while our Housing Options Team can give you advice and make referrals to enable you to access the support you need.

  

Additional advice and support