Dealing with rent and mortgage arrears in Scotland

By : Nick Marr

There’s a growing number of Scots struggling with their debts and many of them are racking up rent and mortgage arrears because of their dire financial straits.

It’s important that anyone who is worried about their debts seeks help and advice and to not ignore the problem.

In the case of rent and mortgage arrears, it’s possible that the debtor may lose their home by not taking action promptly.

Among the organisations that can offer help and offer advice about a Scottish trust deed are Scotlands trust deed, they have a team of advisers available and on call every day.

For Scots struggling with their rent arrears, it is crucial that they act quickly to avoid these arrears growing in size and avoid the landlord evicting them.

Firstly, speak to the landlord and explain why you are in arrears and agree a repayment action plan. Most landlords will be sympathetic and help resolve the situation.

Help with paying your rent

Next, if you are a Scot on a low income you may find that you are entitled to help with paying your rent with housing benefit. If you are entitled to it, you may be able to have a backdated claim agreed – going back six months.

If you are already claiming housing benefit in Scotland but this does not cover all of the rent, you could claim a discretionary housing payment which may help pay off the arrears or help cover the difference.

This is also a good time to speak with a specialist adviser and get a benefits check-up to ensure you are receiving everything you are entitled to.

The next step is to work out your finances and be honest in your outgoings and incomings to work out what your budget actually is.

This will highlight areas where expenditure can be reduced, particularly on non-essential items, and focus on those things that need to be paid every week or month.

To help save money, it may be a good idea to switch the provider of your telephone or electricity and gas supply. Savings can also be made by switching car insurance provider too.

Scots struggling with debt

Scottish Debt Rent

For Scots struggling with debt who cannot meet their mortgage repayments, they too need to act quickly and discuss their situation with their mortgage provider.

Failing to deal with mortgage arrears could lead to a larger debt building up and most lenders will add penalty charges for any missed mortgage payments.

By delaying action, the options available to someone with mortgage arrears will reduce and the chance of losing a home will increase.

This means that paying the mortgage is a top priority and their lender may agree lower repayments to help with the financial situation.

As with someone in rent arrears, it’s also important to work out your budget to find out how much you owe and where your income is being spent.

However, it’s also a good idea to check whether you have valid mortgage payment protection insurance because this will cover the repayments over a fixed period of time. For this to work, the mortgage holder will need to have been made redundant, suffered an illness or accident.

Help for Scots struggling with mortgage and rent arrears

These are just a few of the steps available to help for Scots struggling with mortgage and rent arrears but the crucial thing is to act promptly and discuss their problems with someone who can help or offer advice.