Housing FAQs/Our Commitment

Please read through our FAQs below that may be able to answer any questions you may have about your tenancy during the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Our commitment

We’re working tirelessly to support our tenants and communities through really challenging times.

We want to help you stay safe and well at home and focussed on looking after each other as well as being supported.

If you are worrying about paying your rent or any other Hafod tenancy matter, we can help by linking you to your neighbourhood coach, a smart money advisor or other service you may wish to be in touch with.

We want to work with you to find solutions and help you get through these difficult times, so if you aren’t already in touch, please make contact and help us reach out to you.

We are committing to:

Keeping our customers safe and secure in their homes
Housing associations across Wales have committed to not evicting any tenant who suffers financial hardship during this outbreak.

Providing financial advice to those who need it
Our Smart Money team are on hand to help provide advice and up to date Government information. We have already contacted those who we think may be having financial issues to help them.

Offering support and find solutions if paying rent is difficult
Our colleagues are keeping an eye on rent accounts and trying to spot potential problems before they happen. When there are issues we will be as flexible as possible to help.

Supporting our customers’ well-being
We are contacting those who we think may need support and linking them to other organisations including:
– Over 70s
– Those with health conditions
– Those with previous financial difficulties

Our neighbourhood coaches also know your areas well and will be contacting anyone else who may need help. If you’ve missed a call or haven’t received one yet and have a concern, please get in touch on 0800 024 8968 or email enquiries@hafod.org.uk.

Thank you
Elke Winton
Director of Housing and Support

Rent

blank

How can I pay my rent?

There are many ways to pay your rent such as:

Hafod 24/7 app
Our app offers a range of ways to pay your rent and more at a time that suits you. Available on Android and Apple, just search ‘Hafod’ in your app store and download it today or click here for more information.

Money Transfer
You can transfer money from your bank account direct to your rent account. Our details are: Hafod Housing Association Ltd Sort code: 20-18-76 Account number 70416347. You will need to quote your tenancy number when making your payment.

Post Office
You can use your Allpay payment card at any Post Office or you can pay by cash, cheque or debit card. Replacement cards can be ordered from our head office.

PayPoint
You can pay in any outlet displays the PayPoint sign. Details of all PayPoint outlets in South Wales can be found at paypoint.com or contact us and we can send you a list for your area.

By post
You can send cheques (not cash) made payable to Hafod Housing Assocation Ltd by post to our address below. Please write your academy and/or tenancy numbers on the back of your cheque.

St Hilary Court, Copthorne Way, Cardiff, CF5 6ES

By Telephone – using your Allpay payment card
You can pay over the telephone by credit or debit card, simply have your Allpay card ready (as you will need to know your 19 digit Allpay card number) and call 0844 557 8321 (24 hours a day).

If you do not have your Allpay card to hand please call 0844 557 8318 Monday to Friday 8:00 am until 6pm this will take you through to an operator who can assist and provide you with your 19 digit Allpay card number.

Why is my rent going up?

Every April, as per your tenancy agreement, there is a rent increase. This is to cover repaying the mortgage on your home and housing management and maintenance costs for your property. Hafod aims to keep rents affordable and take direction from the Welsh Assembly Government. If you are interested in how our rents are set and would like to take part in a rent setting project currently being run by our Research and Innovation team, then please email getinvolved@hafod.org.uk or call 0800 024 8968. We value your input.

Why wasn’t I informed that my rent was increasing?

All tenants are sent a letter advising of the annual rent increase, giving at least one month’s notice of the change. If you did not receive this letter then please let us know by emailing enquiries@hafod.org.uk and we can give you a copy of the letter sent out.

I am claiming Universal Credit. What do I need to do?  

If you are in receipt of Universal Credit you will need to update your journal online with details of the rent increase. It is really important that you do this in order to receive the housing costs that you are entitled to. Unfortunately, Hafod are unable to do this for you. However, if you need advice or guidance regarding this then please email enquiries@hafod.org.uk or call 0800 024 8968.

I am claiming Housing benefit. What do I need to do?

Hafod will inform the local authority of your rent increase, who will send letters out advising of your new housing benefit entitlement. It is important that you check that these details are correct. If you do not receive a letter then please contact your local authority to confirm that your housing benefit award has been increased in line with the rent increase.

I can’t afford the rent increase. What should I do?  

Please contact us so that your Neighbourhood Income Coach can speak with you to offer advice, support and guidance. If your finances have been effected by COVID-19 then please let us know. We are here to help, please email income.coach@hafod.org.uk or call 0800 024 8968.

I can’t go out to pay my rent on my Allpay card, what can I do?

There are many ways you are able to pay your rent from home:

Money Transfer
You can transfer money from your bank account direct to your rent account. Our details are: Hafod Housing Association Ltd Sort code: 20-18-76 Account number 70416347. You will need to quote your tenancy number when making your payment.

By post
You can send cheques (not cash) made payable to Hafod Housing Assocation Ltd by post to our address below. Please write your address and/or tenancy numbers on the back of your cheque.

St Hilary Court, Copthorne Way, Cardiff, CF5 6ES

Hafod 24/7 app
Our app offers a range of ways to pay your rent and more at a time that suits you. Available on Android and Apple, just search ‘Hafod’ in your app store and download it today. You can also request a new Allpay card via the app.

By Telephone – using your Allpay payment card
You can pay over the telephone by credit or debit card, simply have your Allpay card ready (as you will need to know your 19 digit Allpay card number) and call 0844 557 8321 (24 hours a day).

If you do not have your Allpay card to hand please call 0844 557 8318 Monday to Friday 8:00 am until 6pm this will take you through to an operator who can assist and provide you with your 19 digit Allpay card number.

I am worried about paying my rent, what should I do?

Please contact your Neighbourhood Income Coach who will be on hand to discuss your personal circumstances and provide advice and guidance with regard to your rent payments.

We will not be evicting anyone during this time.

Please contact us on:

For our Welsh Housing Partnership tenants please contact your WHP Officer on:

If I cannot work because I have to self isolate, will I still have to pay my rent?

Yes, please contact your Neighbourhood Income Coach who will be on hand to discuss your circumstances and provide advice and guidance with regard to your rent payments.

Please contact us on:

For our Welsh Housing Partnership tenants please contact your WHP Officer on:

Are you offering rent holidays?

At this time we are not currently offering rent holidays.

I have received a letter from allpay with changes to my direct debit. Why is the amount different to the amount on my rent increase letter?

The amount may be different if you have an agreement in place to pay more than just rent (such as paying outstanding arrears).

The amount will also differ if the collection day of the direct debit is different to the day your rent is increased. Any difference in rent from the day of the rent increase until your payment date have been calculated and added to the first direct debit.

Repairs

blank

Are repair works still taking place?

Due to the announcement on the 23 March by the Prime Minister we have made the decision that we will now only be doing emergency repairs. This includes:

  • Gas servicing
  • Electrical servicing
  • Gas leaks
  • Carbon monoxide alarm alerts
  • Burst Water Pipes
  • Blocked toilet when sole toilet in dwelling
  • Lift failure.
  • Unstable brickwork.
  • No electricity
  • Broken windows
  • Loss of all heating
  • Bad roof leaks
  • Securing the property following incidents of racial harassment, fire, domestic violence or police activity.
  • Where a situation arises which is clearly an emergency because of the tenants circumstances (e.g. newborn baby, disabilities, support needs etc).

Unfortunately this means that planned maintenance works will be postponed until further notice.

You can report an emergency repair in the following ways:

Why are some repairs like gas servicing still happening?

Our priority is to keep you safe in your home which means your annual gas servicing is essential work which we are required to carry out by law.

You can read the essential and emergency works we’re required to carry out in the ‘Are repairs works still taking place?’ FAQ.

Our colleagues and contractors are following the latest guidance to carry out their work safely and with as little contact and disruption to tenants as possible.

How do I report a repair?

We are currently operating an emergency repairs service only. Emergency repairs are those that are essential to protect your health and safety or to prevent any serious damage to your home (read ‘Are repairs works still taking place?’ for more information). 

To report an emergency repair, please call 0800 024 8968

For non-emergency repairs, please email enquiries@hafod.org.uk or submit via the Hafod 24/7 app.

Useful links

General FAQs

blank

I am self-isolating away from my home, do I need to let Hafod know?

Yes, please contact your Neighbourhood Housing Coach to advise them that you are currently staying away from the property to self-isolate with family or maybe a friend and that you intend to return to your home.

If I want to give in my notice what should I do?

Please contact us on:

For our Welsh Housing Partnership tenants please contact your WHP Officer on:

I have found somebody to swap property with, how will I sort out my exchange?

Unfortunately due to the restrictions that have been put in place, for the welfare of both residents and staff this will be placed on hold until full services resume.  Therefore, please submit an application when the restrictions are uplifted.

I’m having problems with neighbours/somebody in my area, what should I do?

Please contact your Neighbourhood Housing Coach via email for advice if required, but contact the police if there is any threatening behaviour or you are concerned for your safety. 

Please contact us on:

I need to speak to my housing coach, how can I do that?

Please contact us on:

Can we still put in transfer requests / exchanges?

The transfer requests will still go through each local authority via the allocations policies and procedures or please contact your housing coach to assist when all services are back to normal. Unfortunately mutual exchanges will be on hold until full services are back to normal.

I have terminated my tenancy – will this be affected in any way?

Please contact us to arrange dropping off keys:

For our Welsh Housing Partnership tenants please contact your WHP Officer on:

I want to extend my notice, what do I do?

Please contact us on:

For our Welsh Housing Partnership tenants please contact your WHP Officer on:

Will my Neighbourhood Housing or Income coach still be visiting my home?

We’re following the latest government advice which means face-to-face visits are postponed at the moment in line with social distancing advice.  However, our team are still contactable via telephone, email or our Hafod 24/7 app. Our team is also happy to video call if you would like this service.

Please contact us on:

I have been made an offer of accommodation, will this still go ahead?

Please contact your Neighbourhood Housing Coach who will be on hand to discuss any concerns you may have

Please contact us on:

Employment and financial FAQs

Please email smartmoneyteam@hafod.org.uk if you have any financial queries

blank

In work and need to self-isolate?

The government has announced changes to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for people affected by coronavirus who have to self-isolate.

SSP will now be paid from the first day of sickness rather than the usual fourth day of sickness.

You will also be able to claim SSP if you are caring for someone within the same household who shows symptoms of coronavirus and has been told to self-isolate.

More information can be found on the GOV.UK website.

SSP is £94.25 per week and can be paid for up to 28 weeks. To qualify, a worker must earn at least £118 per week.

If you are not eligible to receive SSP you can claim Universal Credit and/or contributory Employment and Support Allowance. Contributory Employment and Support Allowance can now be claimed from day one of illness. If you are claiming Universal Credit, you can do so without having to attend a jobcentre if you have been advised to self-isolate.

Visit www.Turn2us.org for more information about benefits and how to claim them.

Already claiming benefits?

If you are claiming Universal Credit (UC) you may need to meet certain requirements to continue to receive the benefit. This could be job searching, periods of time at work, or attending regular meetings or assessments.

If you are too ill to carry out any task, you should phone the office paying the benefit to explain why you can’t go.

There will be no requirement for people self-isolating to attend a job centre to claim benefits. It can be done over the phone instead.

What if I don't qualify for Statutory Sick Pay?

If you’re unable to claim SSP, there are other options available which you may be eligible for:

  • Contributory Employment and support allowance- This can now be paid from the first day of sickness
  • Universal Credit- You can now claim this over the phone if you’re unable to attend a Job Centre due to self-isolation

I'm self-employed, how will this affect me?

The following have been temporarily removed to help self-employed and gig workers:

  • Universal Credit (UC) minimum payment floor – this means that self-employed people on low earnings will be able to get the same amount of UC as an employed person would.
  • Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) waiting days – this means that contribution-based ESA will be available from day one, rather than having to wait seven days for a payment.

Unable to make normal debt repayments?

  • A lot of people in the UK are only just coping at the moment, with no emergency fund and often only making the minimum payments to their debts.
  • It won’t take much of a reduction in their household income to make their normal debt and bill payments become unmanageable.
  • So what should you do if your income does drop and you can’t afford the repayments?
  • First what NOT to do…

Borrowing more – a very bad idea

  • For most people, the worst thing you can do is to use your credit card, a new loan or more of your overdraft to keep paying other debts.
  • The coronavirus situation could last months. If you borrow more, you may soon end up with debts you won’t be able to afford even when things get back to normal.
  • At the moment the problem may just be temporary and creditors will probably be sympathetic – see below. So don’t turn this into a long term crisis by letting your debts get out of control.

Don’t panic!

  • Things may look very bleak financially for the next few months. But what many people will need is a breathing space until things get back to normal.
  • Missing a few payments to non-priority debts such as credit cards, catalogues and loans isn’t going to result in having to go to court or having bailiffs round. Especially if you explain your problem to your creditors.
  • It’s not a good idea to rush into one of the sorts of insolvency – a debt relief order, an IVAor bankruptcy – until you have tried to get a payment break. If you think you might need one of these options, then talk to a good debt adviser.

What about priority debts?

  • Debts and bills can be divided into priority and non-priority, see What are priority debts?
  • A debt adviser can help you decide what to do if you have problems with any sorts of debts and bills, but it’s especially helpful for priority debts.
  • The normal aim is for you to pay as much as possible to the priority debts such as your rent and council tax even if that means paying little or nothing to non-priority debts such as credit cards and loans.
  • Claiming Universal Credit may be able to get you some help with the cost of renting.
  • Applying for Council Tax support – on your local council website – may be able to reduce your council tax bills.
  • If you are worried about a gas or electricity bill, talk to the supplier and explain your income has dropped because of coronavirus and ask if you can pay it over a longer period.

Non-priority debts – a payment break

  • RBS, Lloyds and TSB have already said that they will allow customers with mortgages and loans to defer payments if they are affected by coronavirus.

Don’t wait – ask creditors for help

  • The Financial Conduct Authority regulates lenders and debt collectors. Its rules say customers who can’t make payments should be treated ‘with forbearance and due consideration. That means they should consider taking lower payments, offering you a payment break and freezing interest.
  • So if you tell a creditor that you can’t make a payment this month because your income has fallen they should always listen to you. Even without coronavirus, lenders and debt collectors do listen to someone who explains they need a payment arrangement.
  • And now the creditors are all expecting to hear from a lot of customers with coronavirus-related problems. They know it’s not your fault and they also know that there isn’t any point in pushing you to make a payment that you simply can’t afford.
  • It may feel scary to tell a creditor this but you will be surprised how helpful they are if you ask for a payment break. If you aren’t sure, talk to a debt adviser so you can find out all your options and the pros and cons.

Too anxious to phone?

  • If you don’t think you could make that sort of phone call, you could send the lender a short email or a message through their website instead. Something like:
  • Give your name and account number. My income is dropping because of coronavirus.
  • Then a very short explanation such as:
    I have been told not to go to work because I am ill.
    I have been told to self-isolate because I have been in contact with someone who has the virus.
    I have to stay at home to care for my children.
    My hours have been cut.
    I am self-employed and am getting a lot less/no work.
  • I am applying for benefits but I can’t make the normal payment to you this month and probably next month too. Can you please freeze interest and not add any charges.

If you are already in a Debt Management Plan or an Individual Voluntary Agreement (IVA)

  • If you are already in a debt management plan or an IVA, talk to the company running it and ask to make lower payments or have a payment break. Again, they should be sympathetic.

Will this affect your credit rating?

  • Normally missing one or two monthly payments will harm your credit score but you should not get a default added.
  • This might not sound good but it’s better than getting deeper into unaffordable debt by carrying on borrowing. Maxing out your credit card will also harm your credit score.

Antisocial behaviour FAQs

blank

How will you be dealing with my problem of anti-social behaviour within this current climate?

We will be following our procedures on anti-social behaviour in the normal way, without undertaking any visits, but we can ensure you, that we will liaise with various agencies to try to resolve your issues.

There are people gathering in a neighbouring flat or house, to which I don’t think they should, following advice from the Government, and they are not all residing at the property?

Contact the police on 101 and advise.  If there is any threatening behaviour then contact 999. 

There are people that don’t live here, coming into the communal areas/gardens. I’m worried about touching the banisters/communal doors and contamination of the virus?

Hafod are unable to control visitors/deliveries to individuals. Residents should follow Government guidelines, and should always wash hands before and after using any communal areas to prevent risk.

There is shouting/screaming coming from my neighbour’s, I’m not sure who to call?

Contact your Neighbourhood Housing Coach but if it is an emergency or signs of any threatening behaviour, contact the police on 999 or if you don’t feel it’s urgent or threatening, contact the police on 101.

My neighbours are having a party in their garden, playing loud music ie. singing, shouting, screaming?

Contact the police on 101.  Contact Environmental Health within the Local Authority and speak to Noise Pollution:-

Cardiff and Vale 03001236696 – this is 24/7

Bridgend – 01656  643643

RCT – 01443 425000

Merthyr – 01685 725000

Torfaen – 01633 647622

Newport – 01633 656656

Contact your neighbourhood coach to advise.

I can constantly smell cannabis within my neighbour’s property?

Report to the police on 101 who will refer to the Intelligence Unit.  If you are able to be specific on where the smell of drugs is coming from, please advise, along with times of the incidents.

Useful Links