How we can help you
Tired of worrying about money? We’re here to help!
Dealing with money can be really overwhelming and if you’re struggling to make ends meet, it can cause a lot of stress and anxiety. But don’t worry, there’s lots of ways we can help you take back control of your cash.
Creating budgets and managing credit debt
Budgeting is a great way of keeping track of your money. We can help you put together a budget and work with you to figure out what you’ve got coming in and going out. This’ll mean you know exactly how much money you’ve got to spend, once you’ve paid for things like rent, council tax and household bills. There’s some really useful budgeting tools on Money Saving Expert and National Debtline to help you get started.
And, if you’ve been using credit cards to buy stuff and are struggling to keep up with payments, we can put you in touch with people who can help you to deal with your debt problems. The charity StepChange has as amazing team of debt experts who’ll work with you to get your finances under control.
Helping with benefits
Are you getting all the benefits you’re entitled to? If you’re missing out on anything, we can help you claim for the main types of benefits. Things like Universal Credit, Discretionary Housing Payments and Employment and Support Allowance. We can also help you with applying for more complicated benefits, like Personal Independence Payments and Attendance Allowance. Don’t let the form-filling put you off – we can help with that too!
And there’s no need to worry if your claim isn’t successful the first time around. We’ll help you with submitting benefit reconsiderations and appeals if that’s the right course of action.
There’s a whole range of independent benefits calculators that you can use to find out what benefits you could get and how to claim them.
Making sure you keep a roof over your head
Paying your rent is a big financial responsibility. But if you start missing your monthly payments, you’ll end up in rent arrears and eventually you might even lose your home. We never want to see any of our customers in that position, so if you’re struggling to pay your rent or if you’re falling behind with payments, get in touch with us as soon as possible to let us know. We’ll work with you to put together a plan that’ll help you stay in your home.
Helping you with bills
You’ll have seen huge rises in your utility bills recently – things like gas, electricity and water. So, if you’re worried about not being able to pay these bills and falling into debt, get in touch with us as soon as possible to let us know. The sooner we know there’s a problem, the sooner we can help. We’ve partnered up with Yorkshire Water, and we’re on the ball when it comes to knowing about the external funding that’s available to help with utility debt.
How we've helped
One of our customers had been struggling with his mental health for a long time, which meant he wasn’t able to work. He’d fallen behind on rent payments and was finding it difficult to make ends meet, which was causing him a lot of stress and worry.
Our money coach sorted a benefit check and found out he could be entitled to more Universal Credit (UC) and a Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
So, we arranged a UC work capability assessment, and he was awarded an extra £343.63 a month. Our PIP application was successful too so a weekly payment of £152.15 a week was awarded.
Securing this extra money was a game changer and our customer is now up to date with all his bill and rent payments, is no longer in rent arrears and is feeling a lot less stressed.
“I’m really grateful to the money coach for all their help. Because of my health problems, I wouldn’t have been able to sort this out on my own, I wouldn’t have known where to start.”
Got a question about your money?
Universal Credit (UC) is a monthly benefit which pays a personal allowance and housing allowance to working-age people. UC will sometimes include an allowance if you’re unable to work, and a child allowance if you’ve got a family.
You can only claim for both in very limited circumstances. Universal Credit has replaced Housing Benefit when it comes to helping with rent costs for working-age people. Our money coaches will be able to give you advice on which benefit you’re entitled to, depending on your circumstances.
Yes. You might be able to claim disability benefits, like Personal Independence Payments (PIP) or Attendance Allowance.
Speak to us! Our coaches are experts and know the benefits system like the back of their hands, so they’ll be able to help check what you’re entitled to.
Don’t sit and worry about it – get in touch with us by filling in our self-referral form. There’s lots we can do to help, whether that’s putting together a budgeting sheet with you or checking to make sure you’re getting any benefits you’re entitled to.
Our job as money coaches is to help you to help yourself. We’ll give you the skills, confidence and information you need to manage your money. We’ll work with you to help you understand your finances better and how to manage your money on your own.
You can find up to date information about what grants and benefits are available to help you pay your energy bills at Citizens Advice.
With water, you can’t shop around for a better deal because Yorkshire Water’s the only provider in our area. But there’s advice on how to use less water and cut your bills on Money Saving Expert and Yorkshire Water.
If you need help paying your water bill, WaterSure might be able to help you. And if you’ve fallen behind with your payments to Yorkshire Water, there might be some help available through the Yorkshire Water Community Trust.
No, there’s a range of options to help people with water debt. But, you should get in touch with Yorkshire Water as soon as possible to let them know you’re struggling to pay your bills.
There’s a few welfare assistance schemes that can help with things like this. Our coaches can put you in touch with the one that’s local to your area.
Our top coaching tips:
- Gather the paperwork and info for all the money that comes in and goes out of your household – things like wages, benefits, bills and debts.
- Write down what money you’ve got coming in, and if it’s weekly or monthly. Then note down what bills need to be paid weekly or monthly.
- Keep a note of what debts you’ve got, and pay the most important ones first – things like rent, council tax and utilities.
- Take regular meter readings to make sure you only pay for the gas and electricity you’ve used.
- Turn your thermostat down by 1 degree to save money on your heating bills.
- If you’ve got more bedrooms in your home than people (or the same number), check out getting a water meter. The Consumer Council for Water has a free water meter calculator that tells you if you can save with a meter.
- Buy food in bulk and batch cook and freeze meals if you can. Cooking once and reheating uses less gas or electricity.
- If you don’t feel like yourself, talk to someone. It’s okay not to be okay.
- Take regular walks or get some kind of exercise. It does wonders for the mind and body!
Here's some handy links for support available if you're finding things tough.
- Benefits calculators - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
- Benefits calculator & grants search tools - Turn2us
- Benefits and entitlements for pensioners and the elderly | Age UK
- Benefits - Citizens Advice
Budgeting and debt:
- Debt advice - StepChange Debt Charity - Free Expert Debt Advice.
- Budget planning - https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/banking/budget-planning/
- Budget planning - https://tools.nationaldebtline.org/yourbudget/
- Guidance on financial matters - Money Saving Expert
- Budgeting - https://tools.nationaldebtline.org
Psst, here's the serious bit.
Yorkshire Housing has a limited permission Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) licence. This means that our coaching team can give low-level debt guidance and support but not debt advice. For debt advice, we always refer our customers to our trusted debt advice partners.