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Universal Credit "Full Service" is now operating in your area!

Private Sector Landlords are quickly realising Universal Credit has many differences to LHA which currently accounts for some £8 Billion in rental income to Private Landlords and Agents. But, as things stand LHA is to be replaced by Universal Credit, with the housing costs, so critical to the income streams of Private landlords/Agents, being absorbed as an element of Universal Credit. The process of abolition and replacement by UC however is likely to be less than straightforward and could take longer than anticipated with a staggered roll out across the country. Between now & July 2019 anyone becoming unemployed, sick, disabled, moving home to a new council district, or have  children who become 5, or combine households with a partner, will be expected to make a UC claim.

In the intervening period, it’s critically important Landlords make the effort to familairise themselves with the new scheme and in doing so protect their investment and income streams. It’s also important not to overlook LHA and continue to maximise tenants’ entitlement, wherever possible “safeguarding” those much needed payments from tenant misuse. This is likely to become increasingly difficult as council housing benefit administration moves to centralised “call centre” delivery, caused by reduced council budgets. We already have seen evidence of tenants being encouraged by Councils and DWP to claim UC when instead they should have remained on Housing Benefit. In many cases the move costs both tenant and landlord much needed funds.

For landlords to ensure their tenants are not short-changed and their own cash flow is protected from incurring unnecessary rent arrears it is important for landlords and agents to take a more hands on approach

Objectives

This practical full day workshop aims to make Landlords/Agents fully aware of the key differences between the two schemes and how, when problems arise, they can best tackle these with optimum results.

Course Content

*How and when will tenants transition to Universal Credit

*How can they make sure their claim is made at the correct time and in the correct manner

*How can landlords assist in that process

*How does the online process work

  • Making the claim; making the claimant commitment; validating the evidence
  • When should payment start; how will it be made; how can landlords seek redirection
  • What’s the Benefit Assessment Period (BAP) and “whole month rule”
  • How do tenants report changes of circumstances
  • What happens if their claim is suspended; sanctions are applied
  • How landlords can secure rent arrears deductions
  • How to seek a mandatory Reconsideration & Appeal
  • How to make a successful complaint to DWP and/or Indpendent Case Examiner

This course is suitable for any staff (new & existing) involved in housing management, rent collection, arrears management, welfare rights & Money Advice. It provides a thorough grounding on the key elements of the new scheme, areas where problems can arise and how best to tackle these when they occur.