How we can help
Use our Benefits Calculator to check what you can claim.
If you’re worried about paying your rent, we’re always on hand to offer advice and support where we can. It’s better to contact us sooner rather than later, so please contact our Income Team, using the form below.
If you are struggling to pay your rent or fall into arrears, please contact us immediately on 0345 345 0272 to talk about a repayment arrangement.
What happens next?
Please note that if your arrears continue to increase, we will serve you with a ‘Notice of Seeking Possession’ (NOSP). A NOSP is the first stage of legal action in arrears recovery and it details our intention to take the matter to court if it is not resolved within four weeks.
The NOSP gives you four weeks to either:
- Clear the account in full – you are responsible for making sure that your rent is paid even if you receive benefits.
- Make an arrangement with us to cover your rent and clear your arrears – this arrangement must be maintained.
- Court application process – we will make every effort to contact you to resolve your outstanding debt, however if you continue to be in arrears (and you are not engaging with us to make a repayment arrangement) we will make a court application for the possession of your home.
If we have to apply to court then costs will be incurred and added to your outstanding debt. Please contact us to prevent such action.
Court Application Process
If we have to apply to court we can request several different orders, depending on your circumstances:
- Adjournment – this is usually an agreement for you to pay whilst giving you more time to resolve your financial difficulties. A further hearing may be held.
- Suspended Possession Order – this is a Court Order which requires you to pay your rent plus a weekly amount to reduce the arrears. If you do not keep to the Court Order payments we will apply for an eviction. We will also request a ‘Money Judgment’ for the outstanding arrears, which could affect your credit rating in the future.
- Immediate Possession Order - if you fail to engage with us we will ask for an order for immediate possession, this means you will have to vacate your property within the timescale agreed by the Judge. This could be with immediate effect, or within 7 to 14 days. We will also request a ‘Money Judgment’ for the outstanding arrears, which could affect your credit rating in the future.
- Warrant of Possession of Land – if you breach the terms of your Court Order we will apply for a ‘Warrant of Possession of Land’. This means that a bailiff will set a date for you to be evicted from your home. This process will incur further costs.
Please note: We will actively pursue any outstanding debts left to our organisation at the end of a tenancy and reserve the right to pass such debts to a collections agency.
If you’re facing redundancy, it's important to apply for any support schemes as soon as possible, as they can often take weeks to be approved. The main benefit for anyone losing their job after a period in work is the new-style Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA).
JSA weekly amount
Up to 24
Up to £59.20
25 or over
Up to £74.70
Universal Credit (UC) is a payment for people over 18 but under State Pension age who are on a low income or out of work. It includes support for the cost of housing, children and childcare, and financial support for people with disabilities, carers and people too ill to work.
Council tax reduction
You may get a reduction if you have a low income or receive benefits. This is sometimes called 'council tax support'. You need to apply through your council. You may have to explain how having to pay council tax causes you hardship. Find out if you can pay less council tax.
Help with childcare costs
Tax-Free Childcare puts more money back in the pockets of working families by providing financial support towards the cost of childcare for children aged 11 or under, or up to 17 if the child has a disability. For every £8 paid into a Tax-Free Childcare online account, families will automatically receive an additional £2 in government top-up, helping towards the cost of before and after-school clubs, childminders and nurseries, holiday clubs and other approved childcare schemes. Register your Tax-Free Childcare account.
Broadband social tariff
The Government has called on all broadband providers to offer and promote social tariffs - discounted broadband and mobile deals for people on Universal Credit and other benefits.
Rising energy costs mean that more people are struggling to pay for gas and electricity. Find out what help is available as well as some practical tips on how to save energy in your home.
Who can get this help?
|£140 warm home discount||People on a low income|
|£250 to £600 winter fuel payments||People who are pension age|
Most of these discounts or payments are made automatically if you qualify. You do not need to apply for them.
£140 warm home discount
The warm home discount scheme can give a £140 discount off your electricity bill if:
- your energy supplier is part of the scheme
- you or your partner are the bill payer
- you get pension credit guarantee or have a low income
The scheme is available from October. Check with your energy supplier to see if you are eligible.
Winter fuel payment
In the winter months, pensioners can get between £100 and £300 to help pay heating bills. This winter, they will also receive an extra one-off £300 Pensioner Cost of Living Payment, which will be paid as an automatic top-up to the Winter Fuel Payment. This will be paid in November or December. Check if you’re eligible for the Winter Fuel Payment
Energy price guarantee
On 1 October 2022, the Energy Price Guarantee came into effect which will reduce the unit cost of electricity and gas. This will not place a top end cap on your bills if you use more. It works by capping the price for a unit, so the more units you use, the more it will cost. However, it means that the typical household will now, on average, spend around £2,500 a year on their energy bill, for the next 2 years, which is a saving on what was being proposed of around £1,000 a year. You can read more here.
Under the terms of your agreement or lease, you are responsible for your own contents and for insuring them for loss or damage. Always do your research when looking for the right policy for you.
Your Housing Group does not cover your contents as part of the tenancy agreement. It’s a good idea to consider what a home contents insurance policy would need to cover for you to help you make an informed decision. Contents insurance is designed to help protect your possessions. No matter how careful you are, there’s always a risk that your belongings could be broken, damaged or stolen so home contents insurance can help provide peace of mind should the worst happen.
My Home Contents Insurance
Your Housing Group has teamed up with Thistle Tenant Risks who provide specialist tenants' contents insurance policies. My Home Contents Insurance is a specialist insurance scheme provided by Thistle Tenant Risks and all tenants living in social and affordable housing are eligible to apply. My Home Contents insurance scheme can offer you insurance for the contents of your home including cover for items such as furniture, carpets, curtains, clothes, bedding, electrical items, jewellery, pictures and ornaments.
Reasons to choose My Home Contents Insurance Scheme
- Apply over the telephone or complete an application form
- No excess (you don’t pay the first part of the claim)
- Covers theft, water damage, fire and many more household risks
- Covers tenants improvements (up to £2000 or 20% of the sum insured, whichever is the greatest)
- Covers theft or attempted theft of contents in sheds, outbuildings and garages (up to £3,000)
- Covers damage to external glazing for which you are responsible
- Covers replacement and installation of locks for outside doors or windows and alarms, if keys are lost or stolen
- You don’t need to have special door or window locks (just a lockable front door)
- Flexible regular Pay-As-You-Go payment options (fortnightly and monthly premiums include a transaction charge).
Who is this policy for?
Thistle Tenant Risks Contents Insurance has been designed to meet the demands and needs of social housing residents looking to purchase home contents insurance and Thistle have approached a single insurer Ageas Insurance Limited. The cover is subject to the terms, conditions, limitations and exclusions contained in the Policy Wording, which you should read carefully. The premiums and payment methods available are shown on the rate card here. Please note fortnightly and monthly premiums include a transaction charge.
How do I get further information?
If you’d like to apply for home contents insurance, you can do so by completing an application form or by calling Thistle Tenant Risks on 0345 450 7288 or visiting the website. Prior to completing the application form, please review the Thistle Insurance Services Terms of Business Agreement and Insurance Product Information Document. These documents give you important information on your rights and how they deal with you and your insurance and key information regarding the insurance cover. Please note that all Tenant Risks business is arranged on a non-advised basis. This means that you will be provided with the key information to be able to make an informed decision on which cover is appropriate for your needs.
What to do if you have a complaint
If you have any questions or concerns about this insurance or the handling of a claim, please follow the Thistle Insurance Services complaint’s procedure which is available upon request.
The National Housing Federation working in partnership with Thistle Insurance Services Ltd. Thistle Insurance Services Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority Firm Reference Number 310419.
Registered in England under No. 00338645.
Registered office: Rossington’s Business Park, West Carr Road,
Retford, Nottinghamshire, DN22 7SW.
Thistle Insurance Services Ltd is part of the PIB Group.