Debts, scams, and online gambling are just a few of the things that may be of concern over the next few weeks. We need all the help we can get; here are a few suggestions where you might gain some support should you need it.
Financial and Debt Advice
If the COVID-19 situation has had an impact on your financial situation and you are experiencing difficulties in paying your rent, please contact customer services on 0345 60 100 30, or your Housing Officer. Wherever possible keep paying your rent to avoid building up arrears. There is a lot of financial support available for those affected, though it may take a while to come through.
Shared ownership residents can apply for a 3 month holiday on the mortgage aspect of their housing payments but will need to continue to pay the rental aspect.’
Money Saving Expert has lots of financial advice about concerns or issues that have arisen as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Department for Work and Pensions provides information on COVID-19 and claiming/applying for Universal Credit.
Turn2Us offers advice on benefit entitlement and COVID-19.
Working Families gives specific guidance on a whole host of issues, including work, childcare, benefits and advice for new and expectant parents.
Some people are going to be in desperate need and may turn to illegal money lenders (aka loan sharks).
The England Illegal Money Lending Team (IMLT) gives support and advice for those who become victims.
Stop Loan Sharks helpline service (0300 555 2222) is encouraging not only victims but friends, family members and the wider community to come forward if they suspect someone is suffering at the hands of loan sharks.
Sadly, not everyone is being neighbourly in these difficult circumstances. The number of online, phone and doorstep scams has increased, so we need to be extra careful.
- The Money and Pensions Service has a "beginners’ guide", with general information and very useful advice.
- Age UK has produced a useful and readable resource.
- Money Saving Expert gives comprehensive information on stopping scams here.
- Friends Against Scams are providing information about specific scams relating to the Coronavirus outbreak.
For further advice on scams, you can call the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 11 33