Social landlord sees arrears drop thanks to bedroom tax preparations
One social landlord has said its preparations for the welfare reforms have seen a “significant reduction” in rent arrears.
Social landlord, Orbit, has had almost 2,500 homes hit by the bedroom tax with 167 homes having their benefits reduced as a consequence of exceeding the overall weekly cap.
Orbit has said that its work on addressing the changes to the benefit system has reduced arrears by around £210,000 while 275 ‘under-occupiers’ have successfully been down-sized, reports 24dash.
Orbit provides 38,000 homes and has created a number of communication tools which have been used across the sector, which includes information leaflets, staff training materials, a pre-tenancy sustainability checker and a tenant reward scheme.
Tenants facing difficulties have received money advice and tenancy support services which has resulted in a gain of around £2.5m in additional income for customers in the last year and reduced the number of evictions.
Lee Steele, head of income services at Orbit Living, said: “I am delighted with our results, which are a real credit to our team’s hard work and adaptability. We have worked tirelessly on welfare reform for several years now and are really reaping the rewards for that work. Our strong commitment to customer education, advice and support has effectively enabled our residents to understand their options and plan for changes which affect them. We are committed to treating our customers as adults, providing them with information so that they can make their own informed choices in difficult economic times. We fully support a culture of personal responsibility, enabling us to focus our attentions on our more vulnerable customers and provide support where it is needed.”
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