Im short with my rent this month and im terrified.

(46 Posts)
bowlingforsoup Tue 11-Jun-13 18:13:57

Hi need some advice.

Split up with ex dp a few weeks ago. This is the first rent payment i will have to find myself.

It's due on Thursday and i am £250 short at the moment. I have most of it here but using it all would leave me completely skint (and i mean not a penny) until next Friday (21st) when I get paid.

My landlord is really hard to approach. I'm actually quite scared of him because when I was a bit short last time (about £150) he was really annoyed and told me I had 3 days to find it or we were out. Ex DP had lost his job at that point and I was struggling to pay everything myself. I do get a small amount of housing benefit but not much and nowhere near enough to be a big help. Obviously with ex dp moving out my circumstances have changed and the council are reviewing my claim but it takes weeks.

I am really struggling. My wages have dropped to standard maternity pay because I had to leave work a lot earlier due to health reasons.

I'm due a baby next week and I've hardly slept the past 3 nights because I'm so worried ill be homeless by the end of the week. My tenancy agreement runs out on Thursday too so I don't have a leg to stand on - he doesn't have to renew it.

What should I do? Ex dp has made it clear that it's not his problem and if we get thrown out we will just have to deal with it. I have a 4yo DD and we have really settled here. My family aren't in a position to help out and im already due them a lot.

Should I tell my landlord the circumstances?
Just give up and move into a hotel until I get something else?
There is genuinely no council housing available in this area they have even stopped taking applications because the waiting list is so long. I could try but i cant rely on them and to be honest it's up to me to find housing it's not a right to have council accommodation.

I am so stressed i feel sick.

whattodoo Tue 11-Jun-13 18:17:53

Hey, try not to be stressed (easier said than done).

Could you ask ex's family? They will surely want to help their soon-to-be-born grandchild?

Or citizen's advice? Can your health visitor help you access support?

CaptainSweatPants Tue 11-Jun-13 18:19:43

Could you move in with your parents ?

MildredIsMyAlterEgo Tue 11-Jun-13 18:23:46

I think I would tell your LL tbh, he sounds awful but he may be more sympathetic if he's aware of how things are and that it's a temporary blip until you get your HB sorted out.

You say your rent agreement runs out on Thursday - doesn't he have to give you 2 months notice? I don't think he can just kick you out without so much as a by your leave.

I wouldn't intentionally make yourself homeless - it would be nightmare especially with a young DD and with a baby due at any time.

Is there some sort of crisis loan you could get? It might be worth going to the CAB to get some advice.

Hopefully someone more knowledgable about this will be along to give you some better advice.

Good luck, I hope you get it sorted out quickly

ParsingFancy Tue 11-Jun-13 18:24:52

Call Shelter in the morning for advice. This is exactly what they're for.

www.shelter.org.uk/

Meanwhile, I'm no sort of expert but think I've read those who are saying that LL can't simply "not renew" with no notice. IIUC, if he hasn't given notice, the tenancy just rolls over automatically. But you'll need proper advice on that.

I know being in arrears even for a short while is not something you'd like, but it's better than homelessness.

MisselthwaiteManor Tue 11-Jun-13 18:29:04

I'm assuming it's your ex's baby you're carrying? What a heartless bastard to claim it's not his problem.

Do you have anything you can sell?

I would tell your landlord but try and be confident about it and say it's just temporary while the claim
is going through, if there's a plan in place that means he will get his rent eventually, then he might be understanding.

Ask the jobcentre about a crisis loan, I don't know if they still do them though.

bowlingforsoup Tue 11-Jun-13 18:32:40

I didn't think I could claim a crisis loan because I've never claimed benefits before (apart from housing benefit)

I'll give them a call and see if they can help.

I have been trying to sell my phone and pram but I've had no interest and I don't want them to go for pennies. I've got a brand new bugaboo cameleon that I bought a few months ago and I paid £900 for it. I've been trying to sell it (still in packaging) for £250 but people are offering me £100 for it and although a roof over my head is more important, I'm not wanting to lose £800. My phone is worth about £200 and envirofone would give me that but it takes a week or so to get the cash.

Yes ex dp is both my children's father and he couldn't care less. Hes a knob and has never contributed towards anything for the past 4 years.

I'm going to be brave and phone my landlord.

Coconutty Tue 11-Jun-13 18:33:19

If your agreement runs out on Thursday then there's not much you can do. Can you move in with your parents while the council review your claim?

They may not have any properties but will have a shelter for genuinely homeless people. Call Shelter.

Coconutty Tue 11-Jun-13 18:33:57

But yes, phone him now.

Sh1ney Tue 11-Jun-13 18:34:46

Email your landlord immediately and explain actually the situation. It would be good if you could also give a solution to the issue as well- so, something like....

' due to XXX happening I am £250 short. I will have this deficit paid on/by the blah blah date and apologise for this unforeseen issue' . Also copy someone else in ... He's less likely to be a tosser if he thinks someone else is in on the problem.

Make sure you stick to the date you give him . Also call housing benefit. Explain the situation. They can advise you best of all and assess your claim sooner maybe if you are very clear on what is happening

Also bear in mind that he can't just boot you out. It would take him literally MONTHS to evict you with a court order.

Have you increased your tax credits? Call them also. Reduce your council tax by 25% too by calling them. And maintenance payments? Put this through CSA ASAP

MisselthwaiteManor Tue 11-Jun-13 18:35:38

Could you take the pram back, pretend something's wrong with it? I doubt you'd get away with a cash refund at this stage but I'd be giving it a go!

AtAmber Tue 11-Jun-13 18:38:16

Phone your council and ask to speak to the housing advice team. Your landlord can't throw you out. He has to follow the correct steps.

fuckwittery Tue 11-Jun-13 18:40:04

Yes he can't boot you out, eviction through the court process takes weeks. If he threatens other action it is illegal. Also, even if your tenancy expires it will go onto a rolling contract unless he has given you notice. So pay as much as you can as soon as you can but in the meantime do call shelter for advice, england.shelter.org.uk/

CelticPromise Tue 11-Jun-13 18:42:58

Put the pram up on Netmums, Gumtree or eBay maybe? I've seen them go for a good price on eBay.

Don't panic. Landlord would have to jump through a lot of hoops to evict you and it's not a fast process.

NatashaBee Tue 11-Jun-13 18:57:42

He can't just throw you out, he has to serve you with notice. As Fuckwittery says, all that will happen when your tenancy ends is that you'll go onto a rolling contract. He still has to serve you one month (I think) notice.

Is your 4yo your ex-partner's child? Have you put a CSA claim in?

And definitely call Shelter.

Where are u?
I'd be interested in the bugaboo. Pm me x

HerrenaHarridan Tue 11-Jun-13 19:42:28

Firstly, calm down!

Your ll cannot evict you in Thursday he must give you 2 months notice minimum.

If you do not voluntarily leave at the end if two months it would take a further 2 months as thousands in court costs for him to evict you.

Call / email be upfront about your circumstances. Tell him you can pay x ( ie what you have minus enough to feed you and kids) on the day it's due an remainder on x. Stick to this.

If he tries to come round to re house without the standard 48hours notice do not open the door!

Call shelter, they will back you up in person if necessary.

They are an amazing organisation and this is exactly why they exist.

I'm sorry this is happening op, it brutal being pregnant and scared for a place to live. Shelter will guide you through this, you are not going to become homeless!

Shenanagins Tue 11-Jun-13 20:00:27

As a landlord i would want to know in advance that you were not able to pay the full amount, how much you can pay and when you expect to pay the balance.

you need to remember that from a landlords perspective it is better to get something rather than nothing. He would have to be very stupid to try and illegally evict you when he knows that at least something is forthcoming as if you are not there it is highly unlikely he would get a new tenant straight away.

as others have suggested speak to shelter and the benefits agency to find out what you are entitled to.

iheartdusty Tue 11-Jun-13 20:05:59

the council absolutely cannot refuse to accept applications from people who are homeless.
they may be able to say that lower priority applicants are unlikely to get a place, and they may end up shipping people out to other parts of the country, but they must offer accommodation to people who are homeless and in priority need who have not made themselves intentionally homeless.

NatashaBee Tue 11-Jun-13 20:44:49

Just a random thought, do you have a CEX (Computer Exchange) near you? They buy phones.

MrsPnut Tue 11-Jun-13 20:48:48

Have you told the tax credit people you are on maternity leave? it used to be that the first £100 a week of any income whilst on maternity leave was disregarded which would increase your entitlement to tax credits (and you continue to receive working tax credit through your maternity leave) so if you aren't already receiving the maximum amount then please ring them.

ImperialBlether Tue 11-Jun-13 23:48:16

OP, if you sell your phone, do you have another you can use? I'd hate to think of you without a phone over the next few weeks.

bowlingforsoup Wed 12-Jun-13 12:33:01

Hi everyone thanks for the replies.

I've been on the phone to my landlord and he is fuming. I have never ever missed a payment before or been late. The house is immaculate and to be honest we are really good tenants.

I've explained the situation and hes told me it's not his problem and if i dont have it by Friday I'm out.

I've not given him anything yet but I've still got more than half of the rent here for him.

I'm going to give shelter a call and see where I stand on grounds of being evicted etc. I've pissed the landlord off now so I know it's only a matter of time before he legally evicts us but at least for the next month or so i know I'll have a roof over our heads.

Fwiw it will be next Friday (21st) that he will get the remainder so it's another week he will have to wait

vkinski Wed 12-Jun-13 12:43:33

As others have said, he cannot just evict you come the end of your current tenancy agreement. He has to formally give you 2 months notice. Please call Shelter straight away, they have trained housing advisers who are first class at providing advice and support on this sort of situation, they also intervene in a lot of situations where a landlord is acting illegally (i.e. issuing letters on your behalf etc). Your local council should also have a private rented sector team who are able to provide advice. If your landlord tries to evict you when your agreement comes to an end, point out that this is a criminal offence (well it certainly is here in Scotland but you might want to check that out with Shelter too) and you will be reporting him to the police. As you say, if you can force him to play by the rules, it buys you a bit more time to find somewhere else to rent. Really feel for you OP, hope you get it all sorted out.

specialsubject Wed 12-Jun-13 12:43:49

your landlord cannot evict you at three days notice. The law is on the side of tenants - you are now on a rolling month to month contract and his notice to you is two months. He cannot change the locks, send the boys round etc etc. (and if he threatens to do so, get help ASAP). That notice needs to be properly done, in writing.

you don't want to end up being evicted (as opposed to given notice) as no-one will take you after that, BUT as others point out it should not come to that. It will cost him to evict you.

You have at least two months. Actions when you have a chance:
- contact the council re benefits. You are now a single parent so your entitlement will change. At the very least it knocks 25% off your council tax.
- start looking for alternative accommodation ideas. Not a hotel, you need to be able to cook.
- set the CSA on sperm donor. His baby is his problem despite what he thinks.
- get budgeting help: you've made some recent big mistakes and I think you need some education on this. Paying £900 for a pram is insane for anyone, especially in your situation. End the phone contract, go onto cheap pay as you go (£10 to buy, 8p a min/4p a text) and use home internet or the library, no-one needs mobile internet.

good luck. Don't panic.

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