It is really important that you keep up to date with your rent or mortgage payments. If you owe rent or have mortgage arrears and are struggling to pay, or your landlord has asked you to leave, get some advice as soon as you can.
The Homelessness Reduction Act means that the council must give you support, advice and help to try to prevent you from becoming homeless. The earlier we hear from you the better.
Advice to help you stay in your home
Three key actions that can help you to take control of the situation and stay in your home are to:
- make sure you are getting all the money you are entitled to by using our benefit calculator or getting advice from Citizens Advice
- take control of your money - if you have debts or struggle to pay bills, get help now from one of the below organisations. They can help you deal with debt and save money on your everyday costs by helping you find the best deals for expenses like your phone and gas/electricity:
- You can also visit our Housing Advisory Service page for help and advice
Advice for mortgage payers
If you are struggling to keep up with your mortgage payments on your home, contact your lender as soon as possible. Lenders have to treat you fairly. If you have Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) or you are entitled to Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) from the DWP, your lender should delay court proceedings while these claims are being dealt with. If you don’t have PPI or SMI, you can still suggest ways to repay the money you owe to your lender and they must reply to you within 10 working days. You might suggest the lender:
- gives you more time to pay
- reduces your repayments (this might mean agreeing to payments of interest only for a period to give you time to get back on track)
You can find out more about what you can do from Citizens Advice.
If your property is leasehold you will also have to pay ground rent and sometimes a service charge. This usually applies to people who live in flats. It is just as important to pay your ground rent and service charge as it is to pay your mortgage. If you don’t, you could lose your home and you need to get advice.