Paying Your Rent
Paying your rent is your most important financial commitment. We have seen many tenants prioritise non-essential bills and steadily fall into significant arrears over time, putting their tenancy at risk. Your rent is due on a monthly basis and it is expected to be paid on time and in full. Late or incomplete payments may result in charges of £30.00 being applied to your account and you may fall into arrears.
We understand that there may, at times, be circumstances outside your control that mean you are unable to pay your rent. If such a situation arises, you need to notify us as soon as possible and with a minimum warning period of 24 hours before your rent is due to avoid a late penalty fee. We aim to be as considerate and understanding as possible, but significant arrears may leave us with no other alternative than to ask you to leave your home.
Our staff can offer advice about paying off your arrears and help you work out a payment plan to help reduce your outstanding amount, but we can only help if you approach us for it. It is not our staff’s responsibility to contact you every month to find out why you have not paid your rent.
Ways You Can Pay
We have available a standing order mandate that, when completed, can be taken to your bank and used to set up a direct debit. You can ask any member of staff to provide you with a copy of this mandate, and for help with completing it.
This payment method provides peace of mind, knowing that your rent will automatically be paid without worrying about missing your due date, and is the smoothest option both for you and for the agency.
This is the safest, most secure method of paying your rent directly to us. If making a payment this way, we request that you please quote a reference. Your reference will, in most cases, be the first line of your address (including apartment number, if applicable). This will help us more easily locate your payments and allocate them to your rent account.
Our rent account details are as follows:
Account Number: 10128061
Sort Code: 12-24-82
You can come to the office or call 020 8683 0012 to make a payment by card. When provided with an e-mail address at the time of payment, a receipt will be issued.
Please be aware that there is a surcharge for payments made by credit card.
Cash In Person
It is the least secure method of payment, but you may pay your rent in cash by coming to our office during our opening hours. You will be provided with a receipt upon payment; this will need to be kept safe, as we are not able to provide additional receipts for payments made.
Do not send cash in the post or put it through our door. We take no responsibility for any funds paid in this manner and they will not be processed as rent payments.
Housing Benefit Payments
If you are receiving support from your local authority for your rent, you can give them authorisation to pay your rent directly to us. However, it is your responsibility to make sure they are paying your rent to us on time.
All housing benefit is paid in arrears and is usually paid at fortnightly or four weekly intervals. This can cause an issue not only for you, but also for landlords who are used to receiving rent in advance and in monthly installments, and may be relying on this income to pay their mortgage.
It is your responsibility to pay any shortfall in rent if your housing benefit entitlement is lower than the rent charged. We call these additional payments “top ups”. Because of this, it is essential that you keep accurate records when receiving housing benefit so you can make sure that payments are up to date and all rent has been paid in full, including necessary top ups.
Housing benefit is usually paid directly to the tenant, unless authorised otherwise. In certain circumstances, it can be paid to the landlord or managing agent if:
• the tenant has requested that payment be made directly to the landlord;
• the Council believes direct payment is in the best interests of the tenant;
• the tenant is 4 weeks or more in arrears.
In some cases, where there is a shortfall between the amount of rent you are charged and the amount of housing benefit you receive, the Council can authorise a short term “top up” payment, known as a Discretionary Housing Payment. You will have to apply for this.
If you feel you cannot afford your top up, you need to make us aware immediately by contacting a member of staff. Doing nothing will cause your arrears to build and may result in you losing your home.