Rent: how to get the help you need
We’re on a mission to help everyone move on up to a better financial future, so we’ve put together this guide on what to do if you’re struggling to pay your rent during the coronavirus pandemic. It's updated on a regular basis, so you can have all the latest info in one place.
I can’t pay my rent
If you can’t keep up with your rental payments, talk to your landlord as soon as you can. See if you can come up with an arrangement.
Is there any help?
The government has increased Local Housing Allowance. If you already get Housing Benefit, you should get more.
If you’re struggling to pay your rent, check to see what you’re eligible for. If you’re now out of work or your income is now much less, you may be entitled to Universal Credit or Housing Benefit.
Check with your local council to see what you can get. Find your local council here.
I’m worried I’ll be evicted
The government has passed emergency legislation that means landlords can’t start the eviction process for at least three months.
This is not an eviction ban. It just means landlords have to wait longer before they can get the ball rolling. They won’t be able to start now until the middle of June.
While this does give tenants some breathing space, it doesn’t protect them indefinitely.
It’s currently not clear how the government will protect tenants once these three months are over.
What happens after three months?
Landlords and tenants will be expected to work together and come up with an affordable repayment plan.
Landlords will need to consider tenants’ personal circumstances. Tenants are encouraged to keep conversations going with their landlord, and to make rent contributions where they can.
I’m worried about getting into debt
Debt charity Stepchange offers free help and advice to those struggling. They can guide you through sensitive matters, and have a host of information on their website about debt and coronavirus.
Their phone lines are still open but there are less staff working, so bear this in mind when calling.
Visit the Stepchange website
Citizens Advice is also available to give free and confidential advice. They cover a range of issues, including debt. As well as guides and information online, you can talk to someone online and over the phone, though this may take longer than usual at the moment.
Visit the Citizens Advice website