Money advice team helps tenants save thousands of pounds

The money and energy advisors at Melin Housing have been helping residents more than ever during this national crisis. Here they explain how they have been helping residents stay safe and secure in their homes.

“We have been busy providing support, guidance and help to any residents that need it, calling to check they’re ok, and to see if they need any support.

In the first three weeks of lockdown, the team helped residents save £374,279.67 through money and energy advice, sourcing benefit entitlement, swapping suppliers, and applying for discounts, after receiving 122 referrals for energy and money advice.

Whilst the statistics look impressive, it’s the people behind them that we want to concentrate on.

When Sandra* contacted us, she was at a loss. She normally relied on family for help, but was self-isolating due to the pandemic. Our team helped her apply for a Council Tax Reduction, a Discretionary Housing Payment and offered advice with her energy bills. Sandra was so grateful and couldn’t believe we were able to offer so much help.

Billy*, a single person with three older children was self-isolating due to being in a high risk category, and was suffering with anxiety about how he would cope with his finances. The team did a Universal Credit assessment and applied for Council Tax Reduction, which means that Billy will be in a better position even when everything returns to normal.

We replaced credit meters in Carla* new home with smart meters, and used a government Discretionary Assistance Fund to get her a new fridge freezer to help with energy bills. She’s also been referred to our Employment Team, so that she can be supported back into employment.

Tony* had lived with over £550 worth of electricity debt for a number of years, and wasn’t able to pay for the energy he was using.  Our team found a more suitable, affordable tariff for him and applied to the SSE/Swalec Customer Assistance Fund and had the debt cleared.

Residents have contacted us saying how truly grateful they are for the help, assistance and support we provide.”

Access guidance and support available to Melin customers here moneyadvice@melinhomes.co.uk or call 01495 745910.

*names have been changed to protect resident’s identities.

Housing associations in Wales will be profiling the work they are doing to support tenants in Wales through a new campaign called ‘With You’. Follow this campaign through CHC’s Twitter page @CHCymru and searching for the hashtag #withyou                                                                                             

 

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