From Kate Belgrave’s blog:
Another short post on impossible situations:
Here’s a rent arrears demand recently received by a woman who lives in a Basildon flat with her three young children (the arrears have increased since she received this letter).
It appears these arrears have come about because of the recently-lowered benefit cap.
This woman’s benefits exceeded the Out of Greater London limit of £384.62 by about £100 a week. As a result, at the end of last year, her housing benefit was cut by about £100 a week from about £188 a week to to £87 a week (think the sums are correct, looking at the paperwork. Give me a shout if you think the totals need looking at. Maths problems with these things are not at all uncommon).
Basildon council recently gave this woman a discretionary housing payment of £20 a week to cover some of the rent shortfall. That helps a bit, but only a bit. She only gets the DHP for the short term, too. After that, she either finds the full whack each week, or moves house again (this time with a serious arrears history) and takes the kids out of school again (she was recently in temporary accommodation in another borough)… or she ultimately gets evicted, I guess: