How to Pay Your Rent

As a BCHA customer, it is part of your tenancy agreement to pay rent, and any other charges for your home, including your service charge. Rent payments are made on Mondays either weekly, fortnightly or monthly depending on your agreement. 

You have a number of options to choose from to pay your rent: 

Rent Increases

We review our rent and service charges once a year in April. If your rent or service charge is going to change, we will write to you and let you know at least one month before it is set to change. 
If your rent increases you must then either increase your payments or, if you get a housing benefit, tell the local council about the increase by showing them the letter we send you.  
If you receive housing benefit, let your local council know when your rent changes so they can alter their payments. 
If you want to appeal against a rent increase you can contact the Residential Property Tribunal Service. 


What if you can't pay your rent?

We understand that circumstances can change and that not being able to pay your bills can be worrying. We offer advice and support to our customers who are having difficulty paying their rent. 

As a tenant, you have a legal obligation to pay rent. It is the most important part of a tenancy agreement and goes towards paying for the services that we provide to you. If you miss payments, you will owe us this money and your account will be in arrears.  

If you are having trouble paying you rent, you should seek advice as soon as possible. The first thing you need to do is contact your  Income Recovery and Financial Inclusion Officer.

They will work with you to identify why you are unable to pay your rent, and try to help you sort the problem. If it is a temporary problem, for example, your Child Tax Credit has been delayed, then we can work with you to set up an agreement, establishing when and how you will pay your rent. 

However, if there has been a significant change to your circumstances, for instance, if you have lost your job, your Tenancy Officer will advise you of your next steps, and how you can prevent your rent arrears from increasing.  

One way for us to help you will be to work through an Income & Expenditure Form, this will show you exactly what money you have left over each month to go towards debts. It will also ensure that any agreements that you make to clear your rent arrears are affordable. As long as you continue to maintain these payments, we will not need to make any further contact. 

If you would prefer to discuss your finances with an independent service, then please let your Income Recovery and Financial Inclusion Officer know, who will be able to provide you with some contact details. 


What happens if you don't pay?

We do not recommend that you ignore your rent arrears – it is always best to speak to someone to help you get back in control of your finances. 

Our Income Recovery and Financial Inclusion team will be able to offer you advice on ways to manage your money, and if you’re in arrears they will be able to help you find a way to pay these off. 

The advice we can offer, includes: 

  • Information about housing benefit and any other benefits that you may be entitled to 
  • Advising you about how to manage any debts you may have 
  • Putting you in touch with an independent advice agency and a debt advice agency if we think they might be able to help you 

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