How we set your rent:
Your weekly rent is usually made up of the following elements:
- Net rent - this is the weekly charge for your tenancy of the property
- Heating and hot water - if it is provided by a central system in your block
- Service charges - for services such as estate cleaning, communal lighting, security, grounds maintenance and communal digital aerial systems
- Supporting People - for a housing-related support service if you have one. You don't have to pay this charge if you are receiving Housing Benefit
Your rent is assessed under Government guidelines which apply to all councils and housing associations.
Information about your account:
If you contact a Housing Assistant on (01322 343134) requesting information about your rent account, please make sure that you have your rent account number available as you will be asked to give this.
If you don't have your rent account number when you call, the Housing Assistant will ask you to confirm your date of birth as a security measure, before giving you any information about your account. This is for Data Protection purposes and helps to keep your personal information safe.
What should I do if I have a problem paying my rent:
Contact your Housing Assistant or Housing Officer immediately either by telephone on 01322 343134 or by calling into the Civic Centre, where you will be seen even if you do not have an appointment. However, it helps us to allocate time to help you and reduces waiting times if you make an appointment first.
As with all debts, once you have fallen behind with your rent or service charges it can be very difficult to pay off your arrears quickly. We will discuss with you ways you can clear them gradually or suggest other advice that may be available, for example, from the Citizens' Advice Bureau.
All conversations and discussions concerning your debt will be in strict confidence and any information provided will only be used for the purpose for which it was supplied under the Council's Data Protection Protocol.
StepChange Debt Charity:
StepChange Debt Charity provides free, impartial, anonymous debt advice, debt management and help. StepChange will work with you and discuss the best options available to you.
Contact 0800 138 111 or visit www.stepchange.org for more information.
The National Debtline provides free confidential and independent advice on how to deal with debt problems. The freephone helpline for debt advice is 0808 808 4000 and is available from Monday to Friday between 9am and 9pm and Saturday between 9am and 1pm.
They may be able to:
- Check you are getting all the benefits you may be entitled to
- Help you identify the most important debts and take action accordingly
- Help you plan your weekly and monthly budget
- Draw up a financial statement by looking at your income and outgoings
- Help you to decide on a plan to deal with your debts
- Negotiate with the people you owe money to
- Advise you on court procedures, help reply to court documents and represent you at court appearances where appropriate
Also, the Citizens Advice Bureau can offer independent financial advice and support.