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Won't accept me because I get universal credit

125 replies

keysonthehighshelf · 27/12/2019 19:57

I'm really shocked. I bring home 1500 a month, but am a lone parent who has left an abusive relationship. I get no maintenance for my son and due to this my outgoings are massive. 700 a month for the child minder full time. I'm trying to find a place to rent, found somewhere perfect for me and my one year old, but they won't accept me because I am on receipt of universal credit. Is this right? I didn't know this was a thing.

OP posts:
newbingepisodes · 27/12/2019 21:02

Landlords can (rightly or wrongly - I'm not passing judgment either way) refuse to accept tenants who are in receipt of benefits such as housing benefit / new UC.

ChocolateCoins19 · 27/12/2019 21:03

But if it's not declared. They will look at currents wage.. And then minus CC costs and other costs and say they can't afford the rent.

Again ours even without the UC. We could afford to private rent. Just wouldn't have loads left each month.. But doable. They said it wasn't doable. And needed more income..

Babyroobs · 27/12/2019 21:04

No one just gets Uc for childcare costs though, you get a rent element ( or you will when you start renting) within your UC and that is meant to help people pay their rent. I think because Uc has had such a bad press with people waiting weeks for it to be paid and therefore landlords often not being paid on time, many are reluctant to rent to tenants claiming it. you could ask if the landlord would maybe accept a bigger deposit or a guarantor ( if you can find one). As others have said it also affects their insurance.

NeverTwerkNaked · 27/12/2019 21:06

I work for a local authority that is building new private rented housing itself (as well as new social housing). It may be worth contacting local authorities near you in case they are doing similar or can point you in the direction of sensible landlords

iamNOTmagic · 27/12/2019 21:08

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Justaboy · 27/12/2019 21:21

I' m an evil wicked top hatted cigar smokin Land Lord!

And I make the decision on who I rent to or not, and yes I've had a few single mums on benefits over time and no more problems with them than any other tenants.

One of them she was the most hardworking person and was an excelent mum to her daughter:) Now shes moved out and married a very nice man she met and all's well with her:)

purpleme12 · 27/12/2019 21:25

I wish people would stop saying they can't do it cos their insurance says they can't. They've chosen to go with that particular insurance company which says that. If they wanted to they could get insurance which would allow people on benefits - it's less common but by no means impossible. They just obviously haven't looked for it

Treacletoots · 27/12/2019 21:26

It's mostly down to the risk element. Now landlords have to pay to find, reference their tenants and set up contracts they're becoming fussier than ever. Add to that a limit on deposits meaning that if the tenant trashes the property and doesn't pay the last month's rent they've got precisely 1 weeks rent to cover the damage which can run into (tens of) thousands and yes it happens more than you would like to believe.

The issue here is that the organisations specifically designed to house people who really need them in situation s where the private rented I. E. Council and social housing don't have any properties available thanks to decades of underfunding.

I sympathise with OP I really do. But with my landlords hat on, the UC in itself isn't the red flag. If they passed referencing affordability checks then it would be fine as I could take out rent guarantee insurance, but if not, it's a no from me.

TakemedowntoPotatoCity · 27/12/2019 21:27

One loophole is it you can get a guarantor and pay them your rent, then they pay the landlord direct. Then the landlord can show the mortgage company that they are not getting paid from someone in receipt of benefits. Easier said than done I know.

orangejuicer · 27/12/2019 21:29

Just don't tell them.

mollymandyandypandy · 27/12/2019 21:30

Sorry NRTFT but I thought this was also linked to the fact that UC claimants now get all their money direct so have to pay their rent to their landlords, whereas previously it was paid from the council/benefit office to the landlord. Consequently there have been prioritisation issues with claimants as some don't see paying rent as a priority and landlords therefore don't get paid. Obviously this will be just some people but possibly sufficient for landlords to get more picky?

Treacletoots · 27/12/2019 21:31

Purpleme12. Not just insurance. It's likely the mortgage provider too and when comparing mortgage products my Only consideration is 'is this the best deal'.

Like it or not housing demand outstrips supply and until more social housing is built is likely to stay that way, so landlords can be picky in only renting to the lowest risk tenants. Also, the banning of section 21 is only going to make this type of situation waaay more common.

gamerwidow · 27/12/2019 21:31

As has been pointed out multiple times on this thread, and every single other thread about this. It is NOT the LL who is refusing people in receipt of benefits.
I understand this but the law should not allow mortgage companies and insurance companies to underwrite their policies this way.

gamerwidow · 27/12/2019 21:35

Apply for social housing.
If you have evidence of the domestic abuse, you should be higher priority because of it.

I wish this was the case but in many areas even domestic abuse will not get you put on a social housing waiting list.
We desperately need more social housing.

mumwon · 27/12/2019 21:37

the universal credit system is dire - first of all the time period of financial assessment - where for instance, you get paid uc every 4 weeks but sometime some months you may get paid twice in that time period & although this maybe for the next 4 weeks for you the uc assesses this as a larger payment in that period than of course you get a lower salary for the time period but your uc will be decreased because of the assumed double payment from the previous month (& yes we know that doesn't make sense - but check it out!) you get overtime for one month say than they deduct uc again & delay you getting a new claim in so you land up with an erratic income thanks to the system - & as they pay you in arrears … & they pay the housing benefit directly to the tenant they can find themselves playing ducks & drakes to try & pay everything - this is why both insurances & buy to let mortgages put restrictions on tenants - &, of course LL may well have had previously bad experiences - telling someone to hide their finances especially if it comes to light that they have hidden UC is probably dishonest - & if the LLrequests other checks . Look rather than doing that go to agent & ask how do you have to provide proof of income & than go & get the paper work yourself & show them that you have the income & this small amount is for your child care - provide proof & ask if you can talk to the LL - ask if your parents can act as guarantor - if you have been in your job for some time that will be good too. However they may require that your income has to be a set percentage for you to be able to afford to pay the rent - again ask how it works

VivaLeBeaver · 27/12/2019 21:41

It’s often a condition of a buy to let mortgage.

purpleme12 · 27/12/2019 21:42

@Treacletoots I know it's not just insurance but people always mention it in these types of threads as a reason why they can't. But it's not really because there are insurance companies that will let you. It's just that that person has not chosen one that will. That's what annoys me. People who don't know about these things then think oh it's impossible to find insurance that allows people in benefits which simply isn't true

Pixxie7 · 27/12/2019 21:46

Contact shelter they will advise you advocate for you, or contact local mp and ask them to intervene.

Sotiredofthislife · 27/12/2019 21:51

So what are you getting universal credit for if you earn that much?

What has that got to do with you?

HugoSpritz · 27/12/2019 21:51

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AnotherEmma · 27/12/2019 21:54


There are several criteria for getting social housing and domestic abuse is certainly one of them.

While demand for social housing far outweighs supply, there is no guarantee of getting it quickly, but you're implying that people won't even get on the waiting list, which just isn't true. People can get on the list, they just might have a long wait! And the length of the wait depends on the area and their circumstances.

Some links for you

Interestedwoman · 27/12/2019 21:55

Yes it's a regular thing from landlords/estate agents. You'll find it quite hard to rent if you tell them you're on benefits.

Just don't tell them, they don't have to know.

Interestedwoman · 27/12/2019 22:01

It's nothing to do with mortage, insurance or anything. It's prejudice and assuming people on benefits will be bad tenants and trash a house etc, which isn't necessarily true. It can also be that the landlord isn't declaring their income from tenants, so is tax dodging etc. If someone on benefits is listed as living there, the IRS etc will find out about their undeclared income. I know all this as a fact from my own experience of landlords on what they thought and were doing. I had one turn quite nasty because as a disabled person unable to work, I was putting her fiddled income, thousands of pounds from an overcrowded fire hazard of a house full of tenants, at risk. She actually threatened me and her boyfriend assaulted me!

purpleme12 · 27/12/2019 22:02

I agree that there's a lot of prejudice and stereotyping I think it's awful

MiniGuinness · 27/12/2019 22:03

It is more likely that it is down to insurance or mortgage provider, than a dodgy LL. That may have been your experience, but one person’s anecdata does not make it a fact.

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