Universal Credit – Housing Associations

Ready for Universal Credit? We are!

From 6th April 2015 Universal Credit can be paid into Advance Credit Union.

Universal Credit has been expected for some time and now it is upon us. The big worry for Housing Associations is housing benefit being paid direct to the tenant and not to the housing association. There is an increased risk of the rent not being paid and tenants may face arrears action or eviction.

As Universal Credit is paid in arrears, there will also be a 4-week window when benefits stop and UC starts. Tenants should be saving now so they have the resources to get by without an income for that period.

AdvanceCU has many years experience receiving and managing benefits payments, we have more than 2,000 of our members managing their child benefit with us, plus more with LHA, DLA, Direct Payments. We also manage LHA for private landlords.

Tenants who are already members of Advance Credit Union can opt for their Universal Credit to be paid in to the credit union, they just need to use their credit union membership number as the reference. New tenants already receiving UC into an account elsewhere will need to contact Universal Credit on 0800 328 5644 to arrange for their UC to be paid in to Advance credit union. New UC claimants will need to join Advance Credit Union and use their new Membership number as the reference. Please contact us for our bank account details.

AdvanceCU ringfences tenants’ rent and ensures it is paid to the housing association. The balance of the tenant’s UC can be paid back to their bank account or we can issue them with an Engage Visa debit account and money will be transferred onto the card.

What’s more, tenants will have access to the range of services offered by AdvanceCU:

Engage Visa Prepaid Card – balance of benefits paid onto a prepaid card; pay at the till, cash from ATM, can’t go overdrawn.

Bill Payments – make sure your essential bills get paid

Affordable Loans – subject to affordability

Internet banking – manage your money 24/7

Regular Savings – build up a financial safety net (mandatory with our loans)

Christmas Club – 25th December every year – be prepared

Life Insurance – included free on our savings and loans (terms and conditions apply)

Our mission is to help our members feel in control of their money, budgeting appropriately and borrowing responsibly when appropriate.

Contact us for more information about how we could help you build a package of benefits for your tenants.