Advice for tenants during the Coronavirus pandemic
Rent payments and accessing benefits
Tenants are still liable for their rent and should pay this as usual. If you are struggling to pay the rent due to coronavirus, speak to your landlord as soon as possible. In this unique context we would encourage tenants and landlords to work together to put in place a rent payment scheme.
The government has published guidance for landlords, tenants and local authorities in the private and social rented sectors in the context of Coronavirus (COVID-19) which was updated on 28 May 2021. The guidance includes updates on notice periods, which from 1 June 2021, must be at least four months in most cases, including where the tenant has less than four months’ rent arrears.
If you are facing financial hardship, support is available. You may qualify for Universal Credit, and your landlord should support you to apply for this. Landlords can also claim a mortgage holiday if their tenants cannot pay rent due to coronavirus.
- If you need to make a claim for Universal Credit
- Information on claiming Housing Benefit
- Claim Council Tax Reduction
- Details of Local Housing Allowance rates (April 2020)
Self-isolating in rented properties
It’s important that anyone self-isolating follows the government’s stay at home guidance to minimise the risk of infecting others.
Tenants in houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) where individuals share amenities must be especially careful. Tenants must let the property manager and their fellow tenants know if they have symptoms, as all tenants in the HMO will need to self-isolate for 14 days.
Landlords are not obliged to provide alternative accommodation for tenants if others in the property contract the virus. We recommend tenants in HMOs follow the Government’s guidance on cleaning in non-healthcare settings.
Government guidance for tenants
The government has produced guidance for landlords and tenants during coronavirus, which we encourage you to read. This guidance is being regularly updated.