Arrears and evictions
Our position on arrears and evictions
Rent is the main source of Affinity Sutton’s income and is
essential for both maintaining our existing homes and building new
affordable homes. It is therefore important that we do everything
possible to maximise rent collection in a way that gives our
residents the chance to pay.
We offer a very wide range of payment methods,
enabling residents to choose the best option to suit their
lifestyle. When residents fall behind with their payments, we offer
help and assistance – either through our staff or a number of
independent agencies, to give money advice and to maximise the
In pursuing unpaid rent, we operate a firm but
fair process in helping our residents to get back on track. We
offer continuing advice on housing and welfare benefits and we
support tenants to make agreements to catch up with their payments.
We give clear guidelines that if rent is consistently not paid then
we will have no option but to take action.
We understand that the Government’s welfare
changes will place increased pressure on many household budgets and
have employed three additional Welfare Benefits Advisors to help
residents maximise and manage their income. However, our policy on
rent arrears is very clear and we will not be changing it as a
result of welfare reforms.
Where action is required we will follow a fair
process. If we apply to evict a resident it will be as a last
resort and it will be used where rent is consistently not paid and
early interventions have failed.
If a resident has high level arrears and has
failed to reach an agreement to repay the arrears – or has failed
persistently to make their agreed repayments – we may, after due
warning, use Ground 8 of the Housing Act 1988 to seek possession.
This is a part of the law we have not used before and it allows us
to insist that a court grants a possession order.