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What is Universal Credit?

What is universal credit? Universal Credit will sweep away the current benefits system and provide a single monthly payment for people on a low income or are out of work. It will include support for the costs of housing, children and childcare, as well as support for disabled people and carers. Universal Credit will replace: ...

What Length of Fixed Term Should a Landlord Provide?

Since the changes were announced to council tax from 1 April 2013 in particular for unoccupied and unfurnished properties, we changed our advice from suggesting 3 month fixed terms to 6 month fixed terms. We issued emails and also a rare important alert via post. (more…)

Length of Fixed Term

The length of the fixed term to give is really whatever you feel comfortable with. When the Housing Act 1988 came into force, it used to be the case that a minimum term of six months was required under section 20 Housing Act 1988. However, section 96 Housing Act 1996 abolished this rule for all new tenancies from 27 February 1997 by inserting

Are Private Landlords Prepared for Welfare Reforms?

Last night saw 50 + concerned members of the Guild of Residential Landlords attend a forum in Cardiff to hear more about how welfare reforms could affect their business and in particular Universal Credit. Given the recent articles on Welfare Reform and the sharp increase in rent arrears seen by the DWP demonstration projects, in particular ...

Universal Credit – Welfare Reform Legislation Links

Mainly for the benefit of myself for researching universal credit, below is a list and links to all the relevant legislation in connection with welfare reform and universal credit. If anybody else gets some use from this list, then that makes it worthwhile. Please note this list is as at March 2013. I have no plans in keeping it up to date ...

Landlord Blues: Dealing with Tenants from Hell

One of our members has written and published a book! I understand (but not had chance to read it yet) that the Guild even makes an appearance! The book is aimed at: anyone interested in seeing what life is like for landlords and specifically at anyone considering renting out houses.  It is also targeted at current landlords who might like to

Landlord Accreditation Approved for Dorset Register of Landlords

Bournemouth council has recently launched the Dorset Register of Accredited Landlords and Poole, Christchurch, East Dorset and Purbeck Councils have all signed up to the register too. How does it work? First, a landlord must become accredited through the Private Rented Sector Accreditation Scheme who are an approved accreditation scheme for ...

Council Tax – Discount on Second Homes and Long-Term Empty Properties

Currently, a number of exemptions and discounts are available for council tax where no one occupies a dwelling as their main residence. (more…)

Council Tax Benefit Reforms From April 2013

Currently, Council Tax Benefit (CTB) is assessed by local authorities on behalf of the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) but the rules governing the assessment process are applied the same way throughout the UK. (more…)

Welfare Benefit Cap – April 2013

Housing Benefit From 15 April 2013, a new cap on the total amount of welfare benefits that people of working age can claim will be introduced in stages. The London boroughs of Bromley, Croydon, Enfield and Haringey are to be the first. The cap will then be rolled out to the remainder of the country by the end of September 2013. Most benefits