A common reason why young people become homeless and seek a property with us is after falling into rent arrears and accruing debt in local authority housing. This often leaves people in difficult circumstances and are not eligible for Local Authority housing until the debt is paid off.
Amelia and James came to live with us over a year ago. Amelia had been housed with local authority previously with an ex-partner. The relationship had broken down and this had a negative effect on her mental health, leading to difficulties at work. She ended up owing a rent debt for that property, meaning she couldn’t be housed in local authority housing again until the debt was paid off. Although the housing provider never chased her to repay the debt she was determined to clear the debt off although her only income was from benefits. We supported her to contact them and arranged a way she could start paying the amount back. We created a budget plan and gave the couple ongoing support to live within their means and repay the debt. Amelia has now fully repaid the debt and we are re-applying for her and James to be housed with the Local Authority. This has been a massive achievement for a couple living on a very low income, demonstrating discipline and self-determination to clear the debt. Most months they have managed on basic food/essentials but asked for very little help from us, while keeping their other bills up to date.