Rent increase; Housing Benefit insufficient

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    Rent increase; Housing Benefit insufficient

    Hi,
    I wonder if anyone could answer my dilemma?
    I have a 3 bed terr which I had been renting out to two guys cheaply at £585 pcm. 1 moved out and the other wanted to stay. He has always been a bit late with the rent due to long standing student debt and a limited bank account but has always eventually paid.
    This Spring, his ex partner who has a history of illness, became ill, so he had to give up his job, go on benefits a look after their 2 children. H/B pay £475 every 4 weeks and he has always topped up.
    He now looks after the kids one week on and one week off but there is a possibility it may become permanent.
    From 1-10-07, I increased the rent to £650 pcm after last January installing new gas C/H , new doors and windows . I sent him a rental increase letter on 1-08-10 after having a f2f with him about the situation. He's a thoroughly pleasant guy and we have a good working relationship.
    This is the but-sorry it took so long-H/B will not increase the amount they pay and he says he cannot afford to top up with the weekly £40.38.
    Could anyone who had been in this situation give me some advice or offer a solution as I do not want to get rid of him because of his children but I also do not want to subsidize him?
    Thanks.

    #2
    Firstly, is your rent increase legal? Did you just send a letter or did you use the S13 notice?? If you didn't do it right, then the tenant can ignore any increase imposed until you do it the right way OR issue a fresh contract which is signed by both parties.

    Ask tenant to request that HB review the amount they pay - next in line if that fails is a formal appeal. If your rent is not excessive, then one or the other might bring about the desired result, or at least lessen the gap between HB and the lawful contractual rent.

    If both fail, then you are either going to have to reduce the rent or find another tenant.

    Comment


      #3
      Does the OP also have to consider any impact from the transition from HB to Local Housing Allowance from 7 April, 2008?

      I don't have much of an understanding on it, apart from that most tenants will receive the payment directly, instead of the Landlord, and that it's supposed to promote choice and personal responsibility on the part of the tenant.

      http://www.dwp.gov.uk/housingbenefit/lha/

      Will it affect the current rental rates? In other words, can the more experienced posters confirm if there will be new LHA rates set next spring?

      Comment


        #4
        Hi,
        Yes I did did you use the S13 notice
        Ask tenant to request that HB review the amount they pay - next in line if that fails is a formal appeal.
        My tenant informed me that the amount of HB he gets is fixed until April.
        If your rent is not excessive, which it isn't -honestly! then one or the other might bring about the desired result, or at least lessen the gap between HB and the lawful contractual rent.

        If both fail, then you are either going to have to reduce the rent or find another tenant. I don't really want to do either but you have certainly given me food for thought. Thankyou so much for your response.

        Comment


          #5
          Hi,
          I don't have much of an understanding on it, apart from that most tenants will receive the payment directly, instead of the Landlord, and that it's supposed to promote choice and personal responsibility on the part of the tenant.
          I know that my tenant chose to have the HB paid directly to me . I have not really go to grips with what's happening in April, so if any kind soul could enlighten me I would be very grateful. Thankyou for your help.

          Comment


            #6
            Ask him if he has applied for discrestionary benifit from the council. I have a number of tenants who have a shortfall from the council but get the extra paied this way. Also I always get the tenant to sign a letter addressed to the council saying they are happy for the housing benifit office to discuss any aspect of the claim with the landlord (you).

            Remember as soon as the tenant is 1 month and 1 day in arrears you can write to the council and request the payment goes direct to yourself .

            Also you will get 13 payments per year so £475 = £514.58 pcm

            Comment


              #7
              Hi,
              Ask him if he has applied for discrestionary benifit from the council. Thankyou so much I will do this tomorrowI have a number of tenants who have a shortfall from the council but get the extra paied this way. Also I always get the tenant to sign a letter addressed to the council saying they are happy for the housing benifit office to discuss any aspect of the claim with the landlord (you).Thankyou again for this information I will also do this tomorrow.
              Remember as soon as the tenant is 1 month and 1 day in arrears you can write to the council and request the payment goes direct to yourself .

              Also you will get 13 payments per year so £475 = £514.58 pcm doh! I didn't think of this!

              Comment

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