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Advice on Rent and COVID-19 Support


We hope you are keeping safe and well during this time.

We know many people have seen their income and jobs affected by the Covid-19 outbreak so we’ve put together some information on this page which we hope will assist you and have produced some FAQs on rent concerns HERE.

If you're experiencing difficulty during this time, please get in touch with your Housing Advisor so we can help you find solutions.

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
  • If you cannot work due to coronavirus and are eligible for Statutory Sick Pay you will get if from day one, rather than day 4 of your illness.  This will also apply if you are staying at home on government advice, even if you are not infected by coronavirus.
  • If you need to provide evidence to your employer that you need to stay at home due to having symptoms of coronavirus, you can request an Isolation Note from NHS 111 online https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19

Universal Credit

  • If you are not entitled to claim SSP you may be able to claim Universal Credit or Employment Support Allowance (ESA) for help with your living and housing costs.
  • If you are self-employed you may be eligible for Universal Credit.
  • You can claim Universal Credit online at https://www.gov.uk/apply-universal-credit or you can call the Universal Credit helpline 0800 328 5644 (Monday-Friday 8am-6pm).
  • If you are affected by coronavirus you will be able to request 1 month’s payment in advance without physically attending a jobcentre.
  • If you are already in receipt of Universal Credit and your income has changed, you should report this to your work coach in your online journal or call the helpline.

Self Employed Income support scheme

  • Offering a taxable grant worth 80% of average profits over the last 3 years, up to a maximum of £2,500
  • This scheme is open to those that make the majority of their earnings from self-employment – with trading profits of up to £50,000
  • The scheme will be open for up to 3 months initially, but will be extended for longer if necessary
  • You are only eligible if you have a tax return for 2019 (if you missed the deadline for submission, you have an extra 4 weeks to submit)
  • You can claim Universal Credit online at https://www.gov.uk/apply-universal-credit

ESA

Other benefits

  • You may already be in receipt of the older style benefits such as Income Support, Employment Support Allowance or Job Seekers Allowance (JSA).  For these, you should report any changes of circumstances including any changes of income by contacting the DWP on 0800 169 0310.  Please have your National Insurance number to hand.
  • As of 19th March 2020 people receiving benefits do not need to attend jobcentre appointments. You will still receive benefits as usual.
  • Jobcentres will remain open and continue to support people if they do not have access to the internet, but please call first and do not attend in person if you have any symptoms or are self-isolating.
  • If you are in receipt of housing benefit / council tax support you should email your local council benefits office if you income has changed or you have had a change of circumstances (ensuring your name, address and claim number is in the subject heading). You should send evidence of your change of income such as a payslip.
  • For Tax credits, if you need to report any change of circumstance for an existing claim you can contact 0345 300 3900.

For more information please go to:

 https://www.understandinguniversalcredit.gov.uk/coronavirus/?mc_cid=282d049894&mc_eid=b42a6b9946

For symptoms to watch out for please visit:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public