Friday, 27 March 2015

Landlord urges tenants to use 'jam jar' accounts

A west midlands landlord is encouraging tenants to set up ‘jam jar’ accounts with a local credit union to help them manage their finances once welfare reforms come into force.

Walsall Housing Group is paying the £18 adminstration fee for tenants who want to set up the accounts with credit union Walsave.

The accounts allow customers to spilt their finances into separate pots so money for household expenditure could be distinct from other savings.

The government’s welfare reforms will mean tenants in receipt of housing benefit who currently have the money paid direct to their landlord will receive payments themselves, raising fears about budgeting.

WHG is also concerned about the impact of the ‘bedroom tax’ on 2,800 of its tenants. This will see housing benefit cut for working age tenants who are deemed to be under-occupying their home.

Mark Causer, welfare reform specialist at WHG, said: ‘We want to ensure our customers know now how the change will affect them and offer them as much support as possible, whether that’s form-filling to help to open a bank account, training to get a job to boost the household income or a search for a smaller home to avoid any rent-short fall imposed by the government.’

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