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Sunday, 15-Sep-2019
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Financial Wellbeing

Change to Universal Credit
Changes to Universal Credit regulations from 1st April 2017 for claimants aged 18-21 years making a new claim for housing costs.  Certain renters will not be entitled to the housing costs element of Universal Credit click on the following link for an overview of the changes and who this will apply to: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/housing-costs-for-18-to-21-year-olds

Have you matched to a property and are single and under 35 years of age?
If you are an applicant who is single and under the age of 35 years when you are successful in your bid for accommodation, you may be affected (from April 2018 and beyond) by the Shared Accommodation Rate introduced under the Local Housing Allowance.  If you need to claim Housing Benefit or for Housing Costs through Universal Credit, the amount of financial assistance you receive may not cover the full cost of your rent. However, there are some circumstances in which you may be exempt from this regulation.

If you are in paid employment when you are considered for a tenancy the Landlord may want to check your employment history, the type of contract you have and whether you have any previous dependency on welfare benefits before making an offer of the tenancy to you.

Many Landlords carry out an affordability assessment as part of their pre-tenancy checks.  This may involve asking you to complete a personal budget sheet.  You are advised to co-operate promptly with this assessment.  If you fail to provide the information requested or you are assessed to have insufficient income to pay the rent the Landlord may decide not to offer you a tenancy.

More information regarding entitlement to housing benefit is available from the Council's website under Help Paying Your Rent – Housing Benefit, click on the link below:


Save Money - Keep Healthy

Growing your own vegetables can save you money and gardening is a form of exercise to keep you healthy.  If you are already a keen gardener you might want to share your knowledge and become a Volunteer helping others to get started.  Click on this link to learn more www.leicestershire.mastergardeners.org.uk

Help with Housing and Heating Costs

For information on help with housing and heating costs click here: Housing and Heating Costs leaflet

For more information on Housing Benefit click here: www.harborough.gov.uk/housing-benefit

For information on Council Tax Support or to apply click here: www.harborough.gov.uk/council-tax-support

For more information on Council Tax Discounts click here: www.harborough.gov.uk/council-tax-discounts

For help with home repairs and adaptations click here: www.harborough.gov.uk/home-repairs 

Advice on Money Matters

To get advice on money matters click here www.shelter.org.uk/advice

Advice regarding debts and loans

Citizens Advice Bureau www.citizensadvice.org.uk

National Debt Line www.nationaldebtline.org

Money Advice Service www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk 

Clockwise Credit Union www.clockwise-cu.co.uk

Christians against poverty www.capdebthelp.org

Step Change www.stepchange.org

Checkpoint advice www.checkpointadvice.org.uk

Sources of Grants

www.turntous.org.uk – Helps people in financial need access benefits, charitable grants and other financial help

Some gas and electricity companies have set up independent charitable trusts which give grants to some of their customers to help them pay for gas and electricity arrears:

British Gas Energy – 0116 251 9068

Energy Saving Trust – 0300 123 1234

Severn  Trent Trust Fund – 0121 355 7766

Sources of Affordable Furniture

www.freecycle.org – Find people in your local area who are giving away unwanted items

www.bhf.org.uk - British Heart Foundation

www.homelessuk.org – Allows you to search for furniture projects in your area

Advice on Separation and Child Maintenance Costs

Sortingoutseparation.org.uk – the first place to look for anyone needing help and support after separation, showing you where to find reliable information, easy-to-use tools and specialist services on a range of topics.

Cmoptions.org – Child Maintenance Options, provides free impartial information and support to help all parents make informed choices about child maintenance.

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