Rent payments: paying in advance, not in arrears

Housing / News

If you pay your rent in arrears, we will be contacting you to talk about changing your rent payment to paying in advance.  This change aims to make sure your rent account is always in credit. It also aims to stop arrears increasing for residents receiving Housing Benefit and for those migrating to Universal Credit.

Previously, we have accepted rent payments in arrears.  However, this can sometimes lead to financial complications for residents, especially if something unforeseen arises.

For example, if you pay your rent monthly in arrears, and do not get paid as expected, you will at that point owe one month of rent. If you are not able to make a payment until the next month, you will owe two months’ rent.

We are now contacting residents who are pay in arrears to talk about paying their rent in advance in line with their tenancy agreement. We will also contact those residents who receive Housing Benefit and may migrate to Universal Credit.

The benefits of paying in advance

  • It provides a financial cushion, making sure your account is always in credit. This can be particularly helpful in times of unexpected expenses or income changes.
  • It takes away the stress of arrears showing on your account. With advance payments, you’re always a step ahead, making it easier to maintain a clear rent account.
  • It stops undue rent arrears building if you are on Housing Benefit, migrating to Universal Credit.
  • It helps you meet the terms of your tenancy

Pay a little extra now to get ahead

We understand that you may need time to adjust paying your rent in advance. We also understand not everyone is able to clear any balance and pay enough to stop any arrears occurring until their next payment.

To make things easier, we are asking residents to consider paying a bit extra every time they pay rent. This is until your account is in credit.

For example, if you pay monthly, and your rent is £500, you might choose to pay £550 for a few months. This extra amount will add up in your account, eventually putting you a month ahead in your rent payments.

So, if you pay your rent directly, receive Universal Credit or Housing Benefit, please be aware that our Income team may contact you.

Reinvesting to improve services and homes

As a not-for-profit organisation, set up to provide affordable homes and to support local communities, we rely on residents paying their rent. All money left over is reinvested into Brighter Places. This is so that we can continue to improve the services we provide for residents and invest in our homes. We must also tell the Regulator of Social Housing how much our current and former residents owe us in arrears.

Find out more about paying your rent and how your rent and other charges are worked out.

If you are struggling to pay your rent, or have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to support you.

Please do not hesitate to contact your income officer. If you are unsure who this is, we can let you know via email: info@brighterplaces.co.uk or telephone: 0117 942 4600.