Families in Berkshire that are on a low income and that need funds to pay rent in advance or a deposit have a few organisations to contact for help. The main resources in the area, including West Berkshire, include charities such as Two Saints as well as local councils. There are also other not-for profits that can either provide a loan or a guarantee for the rent deposit to the homeless and individuals on a low income.
The eligibility criteria for each scheme will vary, and some organisations will prioritise certain people. For example, the councils may provide rent deposit assistance for the homeless or those threatened with eviction, while some of the charities in Berkshire will aim to help refugees or people that are sleeping rough. Additional support is for the elderly or individuals with a physical disability. The main organisations to call for help with a rent in advance and other tenancy support are below.
Agencies that provide Deposit Guarantees in Berkshire
Bracknell Forest runs two different schemes for the vulnerable in the borough. The council may issue bonds to help with a deposit, and a resettlement scheme is also provided for single people with a disability or mental health issue. Some other individuals may qualify for resettlement as well. For either one of these housing programmes, since funding is limited the Bracknell council will give priority for a deposit bond the homeless and residents in priority need. More Bracknell Forest housing and rent schemes.
Reading Council provides assistance to people that are receiving benefits as well as the homeless. The programme they operate is a Deposit Guarantee Scheme. This is a programme that is provided in partnership with the tenant as well as the landlord, as they need to agree to the guarantee.
Applicants need to have a connection to Reading, and the Deposit Guarantee Scheme, or DGS, will help families or individuals pay for privately rented accommodation. The aim is to offer a guarantee on the rent deposit for up to two years, which provides the tenant time to save money, increase income, and work towards independent living. Proof of income and other documentation is needed.
Those enrolled into the DGS also can get help in fast tracking a housing benefit, access to landlord and tenant mediation, help in locating a home, and referrals to other support. All of this support is combined with the deposit guarantee and is part of the services provided by council. Find more information on the Reading DGS Guarantee Scheme, or stop by the office. The address is Civic Centre, Reading, Berkshire, RG1 7TD, or call 0118 937 3787.
The region of West Berkshire, Hampshire, the City of Oxford and Poole is supported by Two Saints. Volunteers from the charity help clients find a new home and also gain employment or job training. The assistance is for people over the age of 18 and not in priority need.
The Real Lettings South scheme from Tow Saints will provide those seeking a tenancy with a bond guarantee for the rent in advance or the deposit due from the landlord. Staff will also provide free advice on addressing debt arrears and other housing challenges, with the aim of preventing homelessness in Berkshire County. The charity is at 35 Waterside Gardens, Fareham, Hampshire, PO16 8SD, or call 01329 234600. In addition to those services, other aid is available from the charity, and learn more information Two Saints housing assistance.
Both a Rent Deposit Guarantee scheme and loans can be provided by the West Berkshire Council. The terms of the programme can change, but the council will normally work with the landlord of a private accommodation to guarantee the deposit. Then, partnering with the credit union, a low interest loan of up to £1500 can be used to pay rent in advance or other resettlement costs.
The financial aid is for the homeless, vulnerable or people moving on to more affordable and safe homes in West Berkshire. The private sector landlord also needs to agree to participate in the scheme, and the applicant may have some funds taken from their Housing Benefit to repay the council. Self-referrals are accepted, but an assessment will always need to occur, and ring the council at 01635 519530 for more information, or find more details on West Berkshire Council rent deposit schemes.
Wokingham Borough tenants and homeless individuals can turn to the council for loans and other support, such as help in applying for benefits and free advice on any problems they are faced with. The council provides funds from their loan scheme, and it can be used for a deposit payment or they may also assist with rent in advance for private housing. The cash will be provided at a zero percent interest rate to individuals that are eligible, and find how to get deposit help from Wokingham Borough Council.
Other rent schemes from credit unions and charities
The RISC – Reading Refugee Support Group helps both the homeless, but priority is on refugees in Berkshire. The charity provides them with temporary accommodations as well as a free meal. Social workers also help them move on to permanent housing, and assist with job placement and more. The aim is to help the homeless person move into a new, affordable home, and schemes for paying the deposit are part of this. The office is at 35-39 London Street, Reading, RG1 4PS, telephone 0118 950 5356.
The Berkshire Community Savings and Loan Credit Union partners with CAB and the council to provide funds in some situations. People with a referral may be able to receive a low interest rate loan for their deposit, and the council will also provide free advice, budgeting support, and other aid. The main office is at 58 London Street, Reading, RG1 4SQ, or call 0118 958 5803 for an appointment or to learn how to get a referral.
CIRDIC – Churches in Reading Drop-in Centre, offers advice and help in completing forms for deposit schemes and other services. The charity is focused on the low income in Berkshire, with a focus on the Reading area. They also run a drop-in-centre is which meals are served and can provide short term shelter, but the aim of the CIRDIC programmes are really to help people access permanent housing. Read more Churches in Reading Drop-in Centre housing programmes.
Launchpad is a charity that addresses housing needs of families on a low income. The organisation does not provide direct financial support, but rather they link clients to rent deposit and welfare schemes. They also provide emergency housing, including shelters and floating support as their resources allow. All of these services are combined with deposit schemes from housing authorities to prevent homelessness in the city of Reading and nearby towns. Find help from Launchpad.