Arrears Management: The Impact of Universal Credit and Welfare Benefit Reform

The Welfare Reform Act and the introduction of Universal Credit are dramatically changing how welfare benefits are delivered. The housing element of Universal Credit will be paid directly to claimants and it will be essential that residents have the ability to budget and manage their money to ensure they do not incur rent arrears.

Also available for delivery to a group of 5 or more staff at a time and location of your choice, we can tailor course content to meet any specific needs you may have. Please call Carmen on 0344 515 1155 or email inhousetraining@shelter.org.uk to enquire.

Public course dates
Also offered in-house Information about in-house courses
Location Public Course Price
Places
  Standard   Commercial Concessionary
15 Feb 2018 London £150.00 £150.00 £150.00
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‘I have done a few courses on Universal Credit, this course was by far the most informative.’

Support Worker, Winchester CC

‘Top training. Highly informative and well pitched.’

Housing Options Worker, Winchester CC

Training context

The Welfare Reform Act and the introduction of Universal Credit are dramatically changing how welfare benefits are delivered.

The Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016 will bring about further changes particularly to Universal Credit.

The housing element of Universal Credit will be paid directly to claimants and it will be essential that residents have the ability to budget and manage their money to ensure they do not incur rent arrears.

Training aims

This training will consider whether rent arrears are inevitable and whether changes may need to be made to Rent Arrears policy. It will help housing staff understand the welfare benefit changes and their likely impact on residents, how to assist residents who have no budgeting skills and/or have significant debt, and how to assist residents maintain their tenancies and to respond to rent arrears.

The training is delivered against a background of rent arrears significantly increasing for tenants who are in receipt of Universal Credit.

Course contains

  • An explanation of the Universal Credit and welfare reform provisions including the Welfare Reform & Work Bill 2016
  • The Welfare Reform changes in April 2013 including the ‘under occupation’ rules and the household benefit cap
  • Universal Credit and its implications for residents and landlords
  • The importance of residents budgeting and managing their money
  • The importance of digital inclusion
  • Rent arrears policy, and if it is inevitable that there will be an increase in evictions
  • Exemptions from some of the Welfare Reform changes
  • How the courts may react to any increase in possession claims
  • Financial inclusion and financial exclusion
  • The principals of budgeting and managing money
  • What housing providers should be considering to help residents.

Learning outcomes

After attending this course, delegates will be able to:

  • Understand how Universal Credit and Welfare Reform will impact on your residents
  • Understand how Universal Credit and Welfare Reform may impact on rent arrears
  • Understand whether Universal Credit and Welfare Reform will involve changes to Rent Arrears policy
  • Consider the help and support that may be needed for residents in order to minimise rent arrears
  • Consider the impact of Universal Credit and Welfare Reform on strategy and policy.

Suitable for

Housing officers, rent arrears officers, income recovery officers, revenue protection officers, support officers or anyone advising or supporting residents to maintain their tenancy.

Meet the trainer

Stuart Freeman has trained for Shelter since 2010 and has over 30 years of experience in housing debt and welfare benefit advice. He gained a Masters Degree in Housing and Social Policy at the London School of Economics, has a Diploma in Housing and is a Chartered Institute of Housing member and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Health. Stuart is a practitioner, trainer and consultant on housing, debt and welfare benefit matters and trains staff of Local Authorities, Registered Social Landlords and Community Groups. He has designed and delivered Financial Capability Courses and Workshops for residents.

CPD hours 5