24th March 2021
Residents at risk of becoming homeless urged to seek help sooner not later
People in Sandwell at risk of losing their home – whatever the reason – are being urged to contact the council’s Housing Solutions Service for help.
The service has helped nearly 4,000 people during the last 12 months and the message to people at risk of losing their home is for them to get in touch sooner rather than later.
People in rent arrears or at risk of losing their home due to difficulty paying the mortgage are especially urged to contact the team.
The team can help with the following issues:
• if you are in rent arrears in a private rented property or council property;
• you can’t continue to stay with friends and family;
• your landlord is selling your property;
• you are suffering from domestic abuse and need to leave;
• you are in mortgage arrears and at risk of losing your home;
• if anti-social behaviour (ASB) means you are being evicted or you need to move due to ASB from someone else;
• you have nowhere to stay tonight.
The majority of the people being helped are as risk of being evicted from their rented property and the team works closely with tenants and landlords to prevent evictions and help people stay in their homes.
Councillor Keith Allcock, cabinet member for homes, said: “The advice is that the sooner people contact us for help, the more chance we have of helping them stay in their current home or to ensure we help them find suitable accommodation.
“We can help with all sorts of issues so don’t be afraid or embarrassed to call us.
“We know that people may be facing financial difficulties because of Covid-19. We can help you if you are in rent arrears, helping you to manage your money and will work with you to develop a personal housing plan.”
Councillor Maria Crompton, Sandwell’s deputy council leader, added: “We’re also working with more and more landlords to secure more properties in all rented sectors to help people move on more quickly when they have lost their home.
“This work means we have 70% less people in temporary accommodation than during the peak of Covid-19 and less than a handful in emergency bed and breakfast accommodation or hotels.”
Anyone at risk of becoming homeless or already homeless should register online at Housing Jigsaw Customer Portal (and select Sandwell) or call 0121 368 1166 (Option 2) or if you find yourself with nowhere to stay outside office hours or over the weekend you can call 0121 569 6883.
If you are a private landlord with a property to rent you can find out more information at www.sandwell.gov.uk/landlordproperty