Search the Halton Housing Website

Can’t find what you’re 
looking for?

Filter your search results by visiting our help and support page.

Help & Support
My Tenancy
Menu
Those 18-21 years old now eligible for UC Housing costs

Coronavirus: Rent and money worries help and support

Last updated: 26th March 2020 

We’re here to help 

We support customers in crisis situations all the timeAnd while the current Coronavirus pandemic is unprecedented, we are still here to help. 

We always encourage customers to tell us straight away if they are experiencing problems paying their rent and there is a range of help available.  

We can agree affordable repayment plans and provide specialist advice on claiming benefits, maximising income and managing debt through our dedicated Debt Recovery and Welfare Benefits and Money Advice teams.  

Rent payments 

We are continuing to charge rent as normal and you need to continue to pay your rent in full where possible. Paying as much as you are able to is better than paying nothing at all. We would encourage you to continue to do this to reduce your arrears and to avoid any action in the future.    

We realise you may need help from benefits to do this. You will need to make a claim to Universal Credit for help to pay your rent for the period that you are away from work.     

People living in social housing affected by Coronavirus will be protected from eviction for three months in emergency legislation to be passed by the government. However, any arrears will continue to increase if you don’t pay your rent and you should talk to us if you are unable to pay. We wish to stress that we will not charge you any interest or any fees, but your weekly or monthly rental charge will still show on your statement. 

If you are worried about falling into arrears because you cannot pay us in the short term because of Coronavirus, it is important that you speak to us as soon as possible. Failing to engage with us or make every effort to maintain some form of payment could result in further consequences after the three-month period is up.

If you are worried about falling into arrears because you cannot pay us in the short term because of Coronavirus, you can discuss setting up a payment plan with our Debt Recovery Team as soon as you can. You can contact the team on 0151 510 5204 or Debt.Recovery@haltonhousing.org. 

What to do next? 

We recognise that for many people, this will be the first time they have needed to claim benefits.    

You can get help and support to make a claim for Universal Credit online from:   

Universal Credit

0800 328 5644

Citizens Advice  

0800 144 8 444  

Step Change  

0800 138 1111      

You can receive up to a month’s advance upfront without physically attending a Jobcentre. The seven waiting days for ESA for new claimants suffering from Coronavirus or required to stay at home will not apply, so it will be payable from day one.         

For more information, including making a claim for a Discretionary Housing Payment, a Council Tax Reduction or Housing Benefit, visit Halton Borough Council’s Council Tax and Benefits website page.   

We can support you whilst you make your claim for Universal Credit so please call our Welfare Benefits and Money Advice team if you are experiencing any difficulties.  You can contact the team by calling 0151 510 5024.  The team are extremely busy trying to help as many customers as possible. If you are struggling to get through, try one of these alternatives:          

Money Advice Service 

0800 138 7777 

Citizens Advice Helpline   

0344 477 2121         

Stepchange (Debt advice)   

0800 138 1111  

Additional help and support 

Customers affected financially by Coronavirus 

We’ve tried to answer a couple of questions you might have if you’re in employment and are ill or affected by Coronavirus. Take a look at our Coronavirus Frequently Asked Questions, as we are regularly updating this with information regarding our services and links to support for money-related matters. 

Universal credit 

Want to know more about Universal Credit? Visit the understanding Universal Credit website

Council tax support 

 If your income has reduced you may be eligible for support in paying your council tax. 

If you are already claiming but your income has changed, you will need let your council know there has been a change of circumstances so they can re-assess your claim. 

Visit Halton Borough Council’s dedicated page 

Gas and electric 

Some of you may be worrying about how you are going to pay your utility bills, and for those on pre-payment meters, how you’re going to keep them topped up. 

Ofgem, the regulatory authority for gas and electric have published the following advice on what to do if you are faced with affordability issues. 

The government has launched an emergency package with energy suppliers to ensure you don’t face any additional hardships in heating or lighting your home during the coronavirus outbreak. If you are struggling with money problems or are repaying a debt, options will include: 

  • reviewing bill payment plans, including debt repayment plans 
  • payment breaks or reductions in how much you pay 
  • giving you greater time to pay 
  • in some cases access to hardship funds. 

You don’t need to worry or stress about gas/electricity if don’t have money to top up or are self-isolating. No credit meters will be disconnected during the outbreak. 

Contact your energy supplier if you have a prepay meter tell them your self-isolating. They will send you out two week’s worth of gas/electricity or if you have a smart meter they will top you up.

British Gas

0333 202 9802

EDF

0333 200 5100

Eon

0345 052 000

N Power

0800 073 3000

Scottish Power

0800 027 0072

SSE

0345 026 2658

For further general advice on household energy bill support, see Ofgem’s guide: Who to contact if it’s difficult paying bills.

For more information from Ofgem, you can visit their website here: https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-covid-19-and-your-energy-supply.

Water 

United Utilities have published the following advice: 

“We wanted to let you know what we’re doing in response to the Coronavirus outbreak to protect our staff and customers.  We’re following the government health advice to make sure our customers and our colleagues stay safe and we are putting all the necessary measures in place to ensure this advice is followed by everyone. We understand this is a challenging time and we’ve put our robust business continuity plans into action so we can make sure we can still supply our water and wastewater services to all customers across the North West. Advice from the World Health Organisation is that the water treatment process – specifically the addition of chlorine which is routinely used for disinfection – will kill the virus. Remember, only flush the three Ps – pee, poo and paper. Please do not flush any kitchen roll, wet wipes or newspaper down the toilet as these can cause major blockages in the sewers”. 

You can find more information on their website: https://www.unitedutilities.com/Coronavirus-update/ 

TV Licence 

No advice has been published about support TV Licensing is able to give if you have difficulty paying, it is still a legal requirement to have one if you want to: 

  • watch or record programmes as they’re being shown on TV, on any channel 
  • watch or stream programmes live on an online TV service (such as ITV Hub, All 4, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Now TV, Sky Go, etc.) 
  • download or watch any BBC programmes on iPlayer. 

This applies to any device you use, including a TV, desktop computer, laptop, mobile phone, tablet, games console, digital box or DVD/VHS recorder. 

Internet providers 

Many internet providers are still working out their response to COVID-19, many are looking at giving free phone calls and extra data and speed boosts. Check your suppliers website directly for more information. 

Related Help & Support Articles

Find helpful articles on finding your next home with Halton Housing, and how to apply for a home here.

Help & Support Categories

We have 6 Help and Support categories to help make finding the help and advice you’re looking for that little bit easier, the categories include: Your Home, Health and Wellbeing, Help with Halton, Online Accessibility, Payments and Money and Your Career.

Looking to Move?

To apply to live in any of our properties you must have an active Property Pool Plus account. To register for an account, simply follow all of the Property Pool Plus registration steps.

Manage Your Tenancy 24 Hours a Day, at the Click of a Button by Downloading Our Customer App.

Our Customer App allows you to manage your Halton Housing tenancy 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can now pay your rent, raise a query, report a repair, report anti-social behaviour and do so much more via the Customer App, download it today!

Latest News

Stay up to date with all the latest Halton Housing news here

Read More News
Halton News

Govern our future: Could you be our new Board...

30th March 2020

We’re looking for a new Board Member to help oversee the delivery of our ambitious plans. To complement our existing high performing team to support delivery of our future plans, in line with our commitment to refresh our Board on a regular basis, an opportunity has arisen for a new Board member to join us. […]

find out more
Halton News

Social Distancing – Are you doing it?

30th March 2020

We know that many of our customers are already actively following the government’s guidelines around social distancing during the Coronavirus outbreak.  However, as a responsible landlord, we must reinforce the message and urge all our customers to stay at home and away from others, as per the government’s rules on social distancing. We have received a significant number of calls from customers informing us that they are seeing people breaking social distancing rules. Whilst we as an organisation have […]

find out more
Halton News

Reach magazine is back!

16th March 2020

We’re delighted to bring you the first edition of our new-look Reach magazine. Reach is a great way for you to find out more about what we have been up to in your community so you can see how we are fulfilling our vision of “improving people’s lives”. The magazine will be distributed to all […]

find out more
corona virus
Halton News

Information for customers about Coronavirus (...

11th March 2020

Update: 31 March 2020 Services Update: We’ve summarised the status of our services in a handy graphic which we will update regularly. Frequently Asked Questions: Don’t forget, our Coronavirus FAQs are being updated daily, so be sure to have a look for the very latest information and advice. Coronavirus related scams We are aware of several Coronavirus […]

find out more
colleagues from our customer team have completed CIH qualifications
Halton News

Four colleagues on another level altogether

18th February 2020

Four colleagues from our Customer Team are celebrating after completing their Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) level 4 qualification.   The CIH is the professional body for the housing sector. A registered charity with a Royal Charter, the Institute provides opportunities for learning and improving, and champions housing in order to influence and improve housing policy and practice.   Senior […]

find out more
Halton Housing Customer Engagement Team with Keiron Gordon of Keep Widnes Tidy
Halton News

Funding boost for ‘Keep Widnes Tidy’

14th February 2020

We have provided a funding boost for ‘Keep Widnes Tidy’, a voluntary litter picking group in Widnes. The new funding from our Helping Hands initiative will enable the group to purchase new equipment, allowing more people to get involved in its activities.  The Helping Hands initiative makes available funding, skills, materials and resources to community projects and groups which benefit the Borough.  Keep Widnes Tidy […]

find out more

Sign Up For Regular Updates

Would you like to receive news and updates straight to your inbox? Tell us your email address and areas you are interested in, and we will send you relevant updates

accessibilityalert align-leftanti_socialinfo-Asset 3 arrow_down_thicker_no_fillarrow_down_white arrow_down_whitearrow_downarrow_leftarrow_rightarrow_up_accordion arrow_up_tail article Untitled-1info-Asset 4 tenancycalendar calendarcameracard clockcollaborationcomment computerAsset 4 cross_arrows crosscurves document down_arrowdownload-2duohouseAsset 2emote_1 emote_2 emote_3 emote_4 emote_5 figured_arrowsUntitled-2flaggradient_briefcase info-Asset 5 helphh Untitled-2Untitled-3house_helpicon_additional_incomeicon_alcoholicon_benefitsicon_bettingicon_car_insuranceicon_child_benefitsicon_childcareAsset 1 icon_clothingicon_council_taxAsset 4 icon_electricityicon_gasicon_groceryicon_gymAsset 5 icon_home_insuranceicon_iAsset 3 icon_petrolAsset 1 icon_renticon_takeawaysicon_total_incomeicon_travel_feesicon_tvWage after Taxicon_waterinnovative_stacked innovative key_features keyholderleft_arrowinfo-Asset 5 Group 2Created with Sketch. ShapeCreated with Sketch. LineCreated with Sketch. live_chatUntitled-3 megaphonemessagemouse new_homes partnership_stacked partnership pause Page 1Created with Sketch. pen info-Asset 9 percentagepersontickpet_iconinfo-Asset 6 pin plant_iconplay Asset 2 info-Asset 7 promises_stacked promises property_overview qualrespect_stacked respect right_arrow_whiteright_arrowsearch Untitled-3slider_next slider_prev smileyFacebook Google Plus Instagram social_linkedin Pinterest Twitter YouTube socialUntitled-3square_triangle Untitled-3info-Asset 8 triangle-left Untitled-2 wifi-glyph-24