If you think you may be going to lose your home, seek help early.
We will work with you to prevent your homelessness - and the sooner we can get involved, the more likely we are to be able to help.
What help can we offer?
We will work with potentially homeless households and others to try and prevent people becoming homeless. This includes talking to:
- Housing associations
- Mortgage companies
- Housing benefits staff
- Debt agencies
- Other advice and support agencies.
We can also provide mediation - such as talking to family, friends and relatives if this is helpful.
Where this is not possible, we will advise you about other options, such as private renting. This will include information on private lettings agents, support we may be able to provide to access private rented accommodation and how you apply for benefits if you might need help with the rent.
If you are in arrears with your rent and you are a council, housing association or private rented tenant you should:
- Speak to your landlord as soon as possible. They may be able to make an agreement with you to help you repay your rent arrears with regular repayments
- Get advice from the Citizens Advice Bureau who may be able to give money or debt advice.
- Do not borrow more money
- Don't enter into repayment agreements with companies that charge you for this. The Citizens Advice Bureau will help you for free!
- Contact our Housing Choices Team as soon as possible. The sooner we are aware of your situation the better.
We have a small budget to help prevent repossessions or evictions for households who are struggling to pay their mortgage or rent due to the economic recession and through no fault of their own.
If you lose your home because of rent arrears then you may be considered to be intentionally homeless.
Mortgage payment arrears
If you are behind on your mortgage payments, or struggling to pay, you should first contact your lender and discuss the situation.
If you cannot pay the full mortgage amount, you should pay what you can.
You should list all of your regular incomings and regular outgoings along with any other debts you may have. This should indicate how much money you have left to repay your arrears. Your mortgage debt is a priority debt.
The Citizens Advice Bureau or a solicitor may be able to assist you with your difficulties.
Contact our Housing Choices Team as soon as possible who will be able to work with you and other agencies to try to resolve your problems.
Accommodation lacking essential services or badly maintained
If you are renting a home that lacks essential services such as hot water or is being badly maintained, the landlord may have a legal duty to put the problems right. Contact our Environmental Services team for advice.
You could also contact the Citizens Advice Bureau, a solicitor or Shelter who may also be able to advise you.
Tenancy coming to an end
If you have been given notice by your landlord to leave your accommodation, then contact our Housing Choices Team for advice as soon as possible.
We will check to make sure that the notice given is legally valid. We will also check with your landlord to see if you really do need to leave.
Harassment and illegal eviction
If your landlord is harassing you or attempting to illegally evict you, we could prosecute them.
Harassment is a criminal offence - so at first you should contact the police. Then you should talk to our Private Sector Housing team in the Environmental Health section of the district council.
Harassment includes your landlord cutting off essential services such as electricity - or entering your home without getting your permission first.
If your landlord continues to harass you - or is illegally evicting you - then we have the power to prosecute the landlord. If found guilty, the landlord may face a fine and imprisonment.
Accommodation tied to your employment that is coming to an end
If you are in tied accommodation - such as a publican, agriculture worker or a quarry worker - and you are going to lose your employment, contact our Housing Choices Team for advice as soon as you receive notice of the termination of your employment.
Fleeing your accommodation due to harassment, threats of violence or actual violence
Contact the police in an emergency.
You can also contact the Leicestershire Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 802 0028
Further support for Leicestershire residents is available through UAVA. UAVA support anyone, either women or men, experiencing domestic violence and, when necessary, can arrange emergency accommodation for safety reasons.
The Adam Project is specifically for male victims of domestic abuse and can be accessed via the Domestic Abuse helpline on the number above.
The Housing Choices Team provide a Sanctuary scheme to provide security to women, children and men who may be experiencing domestic abuse. The scheme provides a speedy response through the installation of enhanced security measures such as replacement locks, window shock alarms and we will consider other relevant measures to vulnerable areas of a property in an attempt to prevent unwanted and/or forced entry.
Asked to leave by friends or relatives
If you are being made homeless because friends or relatives are evicting you, you should contact us as soon as you know.
In some situations when being asked to leave by friends or relatives, we may wish to speak with the person responsible for evicting you and when possible, we may wish to mediate between you to prevent homelessness altogether or to extend the amount of time that you have before you become homeless.
Housing Matters - Housing Matters is a service delivered through The Bridge which assists people to live independently in their own accommodation. They work with people who have been previously homeless and/or those who are vulnerable, due to mental health issues, physical disabilities, substance misuse issues etc. The aim of this service is to support people to gain the skills and knowledge needed to manage their own home, retain independence and enhance their quality of life. Two programmes are provided for people living in Leicestershire - a services for single people over 18 and a service for families.http://www.thebridge-eastmidlands.org.uk/housing-support
NWLDC Tenancy Support - The District Council operates a tenancy support programme for Council tenants and also a personal budgeting support service open to all tenures, referred through the Job Centre Plus for clients claiming Universal Credit. http://www.nwleics.gov.uk/pages/tenancy_support
Last updated: Fri 13 September, 2019 @ 11:52