Rent arrears

Find out how we can help if you get into arrears

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The consequences of not paying your rent are serious and can result in you losing your home. By contacting us early on 0330 123 0220 you will be able to set up an agreement to repay any rent owed.

I’ve got problems paying my rent. What should I do?

If you’re having trouble paying rent the first thing you should do is give us a call on 0330 123 0220. We understand how easy it can be to bury your head in the sand and hope the problem will go away. However, non payment can lead to loss of your home. It’s really important to contact us early so we can help you.

What can we do for you?

We can:

  • Agree a repayment plan with you after discussing how you can pay off your arrears at an amount you can afford.
  • Give you advice on managing other debts you may have and suggest how you can get specialist help and advice.
  • Advise you on who to contact if you are having problems with your benefits, or if there are other benefits you may be able to claim.
What happens if I get in to arrears?

If you miss a payment you must contact us on 0330 123 0220 as soon as possible to let us know and to discuss your circumstances. We can then make a suitable agreement for clearing your debt.  If we do not hear from you we will write to contact you to tell you that you are in arrears.

If you don’t clear your debt or contact us we will make an appointment to visit you. During the meeting we will discuss why you have fallen behind with your payments, and repaying your debt. We will also tell you what will happen next if you do not make these payments.

Our aim is to help you to maintain your tenancy, or lease, where possible and only use legal action when arrangements are not made to clear the debt.

What happens if I won’t pay?

We would always recommend that you contact us on 0330 123 0220 to find a solution to your rent arrears as failure to do so can lead to eviction. However, if you chose not to contact us, and continue to fail to pay your rent, we will serve a Notice of Seeking Possession for all debt without repayment agreements.

What is a Notice of Seeking Possession?

This is a legal notice which explains that we intend to take you to court. This notice is the first step in repossessing your home. From the date the notice is served, you will have a maximum of four weeks to clear your arrears before we apply to court. If you are served with a Notice of Seeking Possession it is very important that you contact us so we can agree how to repay your rent arrears debt.

What happens if you take me to court?

If your rent arrears are not cleared in full, or you fail to make and keep to a repayment agreement, we will write to you and inform you that we will be applying to court to ask for a possession order to evict you from your home. The letter will also include an appointment to meet you before the court hearing. During this meeting your Housing Officer will explain the court process.

If you make a payment to clear your rent arrears in full we may not need to continue with court action. If you cannot clear the arrears in full,  it may still be possible at this stage to agree a repayment plan.

If we take you to court it is very important that you attend. Please note that the judgement of the court is binding, and if an agreement is made for you to repay your rent arrears, court costs will be added to this.

If you fail to pay your arrears and court costs based on the frequency set out in the court order, we will apply to the court for a Warrant for Possession to evict you.

How does the eviction process work?

The court warrant will give a date and time for the eviction. We will write to let you know when the bailiff will visit your property. You will also get a Notice of Eviction from the bailiff with the date and time of the visit. If you haven’t left by the date on the Notice of Eviction, the bailiff will come to your home and force you to leave. After an eviction you will still have to repay the debt that you owe to us. Please note that eviction for failing to pay rent arrears could result in you becoming ineligible to be rehoused.

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