Tenant who wants to put her daughter on the agreement

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    Tenant who wants to put her daughter on the agreement

    I have a tenant who has been on a 12 month assured AST for 18 months (now periodic). She has paid the rent on time. She has a 19 year old daughter living with her (not on the agreement). She has informed me that the daughter has a medical problem which means the daughter can't work and she the mother will have increasing difficulty paying the £930 a month rent.

    She wants me to provide a new tenancy agreement for the daughter and her "with a suggested split of £330 for the daughter and £600 for myself" to use her words. The daughter is going to claim housing benefit (the LHA for the area is about £310 for one person.)

    I'm not sure I have ever heard of a rental split being agreed on an agreement, splits normally being a matter between tenants?

    I would be happy to keep her on, even though the garden is in a mess (she hasn't cut the grass once- I left my mower for her- it is like a meadow!)

    I am wondering if there are any potential pitfalls to the arrangement, having another person on the agreement claiming HB?

    Grateful for your views.



    #2
    Are they both going to be claiming LHA, or just the daughter? I would just create a new tenancy with both people on it, remember to do a right to rent check on the daughter, don't split the rent, otherwise you will get into a right mess, 2 deposits, if any issues with the house, which part is caused by which party etc.

    Concerning the garden, I would hire someone on an annual basis just to do it, avoids issues and maintains the garden.

    Comment


      #3
      The pitfall is that the DWP could refuse to pay the daughters 'share' of the rent anyway.

      I believe that the DWP would regard that as a 'contrived tenancy in order to claim or increase benefits'.
      (Which to be honest is exactly what they are proposing - contriving a change to an existing TA in order to claim benefits).

      In which case the DWP could/would refuse pay the housing costs.
      (Plus it would bring the validity of the rest of the claim into doubt).

      The Universal Credit Advice for Decision Makers chapter F2 'Housing Cost Elements - paras F2140-F2146 deal with 'Contrived Liability' for Housing Costs in UC:
      https://assets.publishing.service.go...0312/admf2.pdf
      F2140 A claimant will be treated as not liable to make any payment or payments where the DM is satisfied that the claimant’s liability to make the payments was contrived in order to

      1. secure the HCE in an award of UC or
      2. increase the amount of the HCE in an award of UC.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by nukecad View Post
        The pitfall is that the DWP could refuse to pay the daughters 'share' of the rent anyway.
        And another pitfall that mom moves to some foreign country leaving you with the daughter as tenant.

        Comment


          #5
          Thanks. From what she is saying, it would only be the daughter who is getting HB although the mother has been getting an amount of universal credit, I believe.

          When the mother started the tenancy, the daughter had just turned 18 and was in full time education at college so I don't know if that makes any difference.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Folio1 View Post
            Thanks. From what she is saying, it would only be the daughter who is getting HB although the mother has been getting an amount of universal credit, I believe.

            When the mother started the tenancy, the daughter had just turned 18 and was in full time education at college so I don't know if that makes any difference.
            The tenant has a reason for wanting to do this, which at the moment is obscure -- that in itself is every reason to change nothing. The likely reason is the usual one - making money without working - but you don't know that for a fact. My own child is only making about £310/month for doing actual work....

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Folio1 View Post
              Thanks. From what she is saying, it would only be the daughter who is getting HB although the mother has been getting an amount of universal credit, I believe.

              When the mother started the tenancy, the daughter had just turned 18 and was in full time education at college so I don't know if that makes any difference.
              That does make it more difficult to work out just what may be going on without knowing their details.

              Presumably if the mother is already claiming UC then that includes a Housing Element?

              The daughter will probably still have been classed as a dependant until she left education.
              Then there is a question of if she (the daughter), is or has been claiming disability benefits.

              Unless the daughter already has a 'legacy' Income Related benefit such as Income Related ESA, and DLA/PIP so the the IR ESA includes the Severe Disability Premium, then she cannot make a claim for Housing Benefit and would have to claim UC instead.

              If she can't work for medical reasons then, following an assessment, that could include an extra disability element - LCWRA.

              If the daughter has now left or is leaving education that will have reduced the amount of UC that the mother gets (no more child element, and no more disabled child element if she had that included as well) and that is why she is now struggling.
              Once the daughter makes her own UC claim then that should increase their total income again.

              Although it's not a situation that I'm familiar with, and would to an extent depend on her current disability benefits if she has any, I believe that in that case as the daughter has now become an adult living with her parent she would be classed by the DWP as liable to pay half the rent anyway, whether she was on the TA or not, and so could get that as UC Housing Element.
              If I've got that correct then if each is claiming UC they could each get up to LHA rate. (But that may be LHA shared rate).

              I suspect that they are out of their depth with what they could be claiming as benefits, and Housing Benefit is the straw they have clutched at, even though she almost certainly can't claim HB anyway it will have to be UC.

              Their best bet is to each put their details as they are now into one of the online benefit calculators and see what each would be entitled to:
              https://www.gov.uk/benefits-calculators

              Even better is if they could get to see a benefits advisor who could see their situation, any benefits they already have, letters, etc., but that's difficult with Covid.
              https://advicelocal.uk/find-an-adviser

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