Coronavirus and spike in Universal Credit Claims

August 7th 2020

Since the UK went into lockdown on 23 March, hundreds of thousands of people have been forced to apply for Universal Credit (UC) after losing their jobs or opportunities for self-employed work.

It has been a very challenging time for our residents, and since the start of the pandemic, we have seen over 1,300 new UC claims made. The Torus rents team have responded by offering vital support to our customers, who due to the impact of the coronavirus, have struggled to pay their rent.

Elaine Ball, Torus Service Lead Income and Leasehold Management, commented;

“The fallout of people losing jobs and moving onto benefit has been significant and we have seen a huge number of people moving onto Universal Credit. For many, this will be their first time on benefit, so it was vital that the team made early contact with any tenant registering for UC to offer support.

Torus, along with other Housing Associations, is committed to; keeping people secure in their homes, helping them get the support them need and acting compassionately and quickly where people are struggling.

Elaine added;

“Torus is playing a vital role in ensuring we meet these commitments and are now, as well as taking inbound requests for support, the teams are proactively contacting tenants with existing arrears to offer advice and guidance on the best approach at the present time.”

There are more challenging times to come as the economy feels the full impact of the pandemic, but we feel we are in the best place possible to offer our tenants the support they need to withstand the challenges this will bring with it.