Cost of living support
The cost of living crisis is making it increasingly difficult for families across the country to cover basic costs like rent, energy bills and food.
We encourage residents who are struggling financially to get in touch with us at the earliest opportunity.
We are committed to:
- Keeping people secure at home.
- Helping people to get the support they need.
- Acting compassionately and quickly where people are struggling.
We want to reassure our residents who are struggling to pay their rent that they can talk to us about their concerns. For us, evictions are always a last resort and are only carried out in the most serious circumstances.
Newlon has signed up to the National Housing Federation’s pledge that no one will be evicted as a result of financial hardship, provided they contact us to arrange to get their payments back on track. We will work with any residents struggling to pay their rent to set up manageable repayment arrangements where needed.
If you are finding it difficult to pay your rent or you are in arrears, please contact us as soon as possible so we can agree a payment plan. If you leave it too late it may be more difficult to help you. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 7613 7989 for further assistance.
What support can you access yourself?
We understand many of you may be struggling with utilities and food price rises. Here is a simple guide on ensuring you are accessing all support available:
Use the benefits calculator to check you’re claiming everything you are entitled to.
You may be able to claim Universal Credit (UC) for help with your living and housing costs. You can claim Universal Credit online or call 0800 328 5644 (Mon-Fri 8 am-6 pm). Universal Credit is paid directly into your bank account monthly, which means you’re responsible for paying your full rent to us. The easiest way to pay is to set up a Direct Debit so that, when your rent’s due, it will be taken out of your bank account without you having to do anything. If you don’t already have one, open a bank account. Make sure you can use it to set up direct debits or standing orders to pay your bills. Create a monthly household budget to keep track of your spending across the month.
Get full support on making a UC claim from Citizens Advice’s Help To Claim team – 0800 144 8444.
Please note: when you submit a new claim for universal credit and you’re already receiving legacy benefits such as tax credits, your entitlement to those benefits would end.
Council Assistance funds
Get help from your local council. You may be able to claim a Discretionary Housing Payment or get help from the Local Welfare Assistance Scheme. Each council runs its own scheme with different qualifying criteria but some may be able to help with food vouchers, energy top-ups, or grants to deal with emergencies. It’s worth having a look at your council’s website to see if you can apply.
Government help with gas and electricity bills
The government has announced several schemes to help with the rising costs of utilities. Please see updates here Help for households. Much of the support available is paid automatically to those who are eligible with active claims however, residents need to apply for:
- Warm Home discount scheme
You could get £140 off your electricity bill or towards your prepayment meter if you are on a low income or in receipt of guarantee credit element of pension credit. The scheme is available between September and March. Warm Home Discount Scheme: Overview – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
- Winter fuel payment
You may be able to get a Winter Fuel Payment of between £100-£300 towards winter heating bills. To check if you are eligible Winter Fuel Payment: Overview
- Utilities and water companies
Many offer extra support to vulnerable people and/or those on low incomes. We’ve put together this helpful guide with details of extra support offered by utilities and water companies.
What support can we help you to access?
Check any welfare benefits issues are resolved
Our in-house welfare benefits advisor supports tenants to challenge benefits decisions and resolve issues with claims. If you have a gap in your claim or your benefits have stopped it’s important you first find out why. The issue may be easily resolved by providing some information to support your claim.
If you’ve received a benefits decision you do not agree with, please contact our experienced, in-house Welfare and Financial Inclusion Officer by email email@example.com. It’s important you seek help early to avoid missing important timescales, deadlines or falling into arrears.
Employment and training support
If someone in your household is looking for work, training, or an apprenticeship you can access support and guidance through our ‘Step Forward’ programme by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Support for residents in severe need by helping them apply for emergency grants from our hardship fund. Email email@example.com.
What other ways could you reduce pressure on your budget?
A new government page Help for Households provides useful advice on all support available.
Check out Martin Lewis, the Money Saving Expert for the latest ways to cut costs www.moneysavingexpert.com
Find budgeting and debt advice through Step Change.
Find support with the cost of living through turn2us.
Lightning Reach is an organisation who seamlessly connect people in financial hardship to the support they need, quickly and securely.
You can search through the directory at www.warmwelcome.uk to find warm spaces locally. Each warm space offers a safe, warm place to have a hot drink at a minimum but many offer other activities and support such as food, befriending, board games, homework clubs and more.
Support with energy costs
For advice on switching and support to apply for energy grants:
- You can self-refer to Green Doctor*. For more info, watch this video about Green Doctors operating in London and how they can offer advice and support to residents at the risk of fuel poverty.
*Please note eligibility criteria apply
- Citizens advice have useful information on paying energy bills and debts here Grants and benefits to help you pay your energy bills
- Citizens advice has useful information on paying energy bills and debts
- Cost of living hub from the Mayor of London website contains a lot of information about help you can get if you’re in financial difficulty.
Help with food
- Foodbanks: You can locate your nearest foodbank via the Trussell Trust website. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 7033 4605 if you need a referral.
- StepChange have put together information to help search for help with food or finances.
- Healthy Start: if you are pregnant or have children under the age of 4 and are in receipt of certain benefits, you may be able to get payments for fresh food, milk and vitamins under NHS Healthy Start. Please see here for more information How to apply – Get help to buy food and milk (Healthy Start)
Help with other bills
- Pocket Power help residents on lower incomes to switch to cheaper providers for their household bills like energy, broadband, phone and water and apply for discounts such as warm home discounts.
- You may be able to switch to a social tariff for cheaper broadband and phone bills if you or someone in your household claims Universal Credit. Some providers also include people on other benefits such as Pension Credit, Employment and Support Allowance, Jobseeker’s Allowance and Income Support. To find out if you qualify and how to apply, please see cheaper broadband and phone packages from Ofcom.
- London Plus Credit union may be able to help you save or/and borrow.
- Free/low cost paint for small or community projects by Community Repaint.
- If you’re feeling anxious, worried, or overwhelmed or just need to speak to someone you can call Samaritans 24/7 free on 116 123.
- Mind have lots of useful information and support on their website.
- Talk to your GP about how you’re feeling
- Please call 999 if it’s a medical emergency.