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Issues with Universal Credit payments

Background

Sarah, an estate agent, recently called on behalf of a registered landlord.

Their tenant applied for Universal Credit more than three months ago but the agent hadn't received any housing costs payments. As a result the tenant was in arrears. Sarah spoke to the tenant who didn't know why payments haven't been made.

 

How Landlord Advice helped

Our adviser explained that housing costs are usually paid directly to landlords. Generally it takes five weeks, from the date the tenant applies for Universal Credit, for the first payment to arrive.

Our adviser told Sarah that she would need to phone Universal Credit to find out the reason for the delay. We advised Sarah to ask the tenant to add a note to their online Universal Credit journal giving explicit consent for Sarah to discuss the housing element of the claim. Our adviser explained that this would allow Universal Credit staff to share payment information with Sarah. 

We outlined the financial support available to tenants who have applied for Universal Credit, including advance payments and help from the contingency fund.

Our adviser also highlighted that, if a tenant owes at least two months' rent, the landlord or agent can apply for deductions from Universal Credit payments to go towards arrears. 

 

What other landlords say about the service

"I have used your service a number of times this year due to difficult tenancy scenarios. Having this advice for free is a game changer."