Emergency Loans for Rent

Households that earn too much money may be able to get help for paying their rent from emergency, short term loans. These tend to come into favour when you have some form of income but do not qualify for any other housing benefit or rental scheme from the government. Unfortunately many families ma be excluded from government social welfare programmes as they have some source of income. Still, if something traumatic occurred which is causing you to miss your rent payment, you could be facing a major difficulty in retaining the occupancy of your flat.

It is a valid option to borrow money to cover living costs, including rent and utilities, if you have experienced a recent crisis that is temporary in nature. What happens is that you have the opportunity to keep all of your payment history in current status.

The terms and conditions set by every lender will vary. Banks and payday lenders offer loans for a profit, while nonprofit institutions like Newport Credit Union may offer more affordable products. They will also provide unsecured rental loans. When borrowing funds, you will need to simply cover the loan repayment over the next several months or however long it takes. So it provides tenants time to get their finances back on track.

Borrowing money for rent when you are chronically unemployed or disabled is rarely a good idea. The only benefit would be a temporary reprieve from your financial woes, followed by a worsening financial situation as you struggle to repay even more debt.

Government sponsored Crisis Loans used to be available to help you cover your monthly rent during times of economic hardship. Many vulnerable households have relied on these funds. However, budget cuts have eliminated many of these crisis loans from England, Scotland and Wales, and they now can be difficult to find. Tenants in Northern Ireland may still apply, although there is no indication that the programme will continue to be offered on a permanent basis.

Organisations that offer emergency loans for rent arrears help

Before you leap to file an application for a loan, it is best to consider whether you might qualify for financial aid. Many of these are provided by charities, not-for-profit organisations as well as local councils. There may be emergency rental assistance programmes that are available to those households earning very low income.

In England, your local council may provide loans or other aid for emergency rental costs. Examples of these include the Discretionary Assistance Fund can help in Wales. There is also the Scottish Welfare Fund in place to provide much needed emergency aid. All of these schemes are designed to help those who are very low income, so if you normally have higher earnings, then you likely will not qualify. Always contact the appropriate programme first to confirm though, since there may be exceptions. Find sources of council loans and whether they are available in your area.

Loans for paying rent may also be provided by local welfare schemes. Many of these provide help in an emergency. the type of assistance provided will vary based on each council. However the authorities do have central government funding allocated to them each year. Some may loan out the funds to help paying rental arrears, or they may offer other emergency housing assistance. Find a listing of emergency welfare schemes.

Credit Unions may also allow tenants to borrow money at a lower interest rate. This source of money can be used for paying for different types of bills, which may include rent. Many councils in the UK are also directing families on a low income to credit union loans as well rather than using a payday lender. Since they are not-for-profits, the interest rates charged are much lower. So while it is not a good idea to borrow money in an emergency for paying rent, if the APR is lower, it is an option to explore. There are hundreds of credit unions that may assist.



Borrowing money for paying rental arrears can come from a number of sources, but it is best to consider whether you will be able to repay the funds. Here are some examples of typical loan amounts and repayment terms:

  • HSBC Personal Loan: £3,000 may carry an 18.9% APR, giving you a £190.61 monthly payment for 18 months.
  • HSBC Personal Loan: For those that qualify, individuals can obtain up to £5,000. This may carry a 6.1% APR, with a £291.01 monthly payment for 18 months.

Notice how much the APR drops when you borrow a higher amount. Total interest charges on the higher loan are £238.24 whereas you pay a much higher £431.03 in interest when you borrow a smaller dollar amount. It would actually be cheaper to borrow more money at the lower rate and invest what you do not need!

Realistically though, most borrowers will find that they can use the proceeds to get caught up and even ahead on all of their monthly bills so that they can more easily recover as the crisis eases. Still, it is best to limit what you borrow, since you have to repay it in full plus interest.

We compared loan terms at Tesco Bank also. While the 4.5% APR rate looked great, we found that the rate applied to a range of £7,500-£15,000 only. If you only need to borrow £3,000 then the rate jumps to at least 12.3% APR. While still relatively high, it is much lower than the advertised rate for a £3,000 personal/rental loan through HSBC.

One of the better deals we investigated was a 7.4% APR rate that you can apply for through the Post Office. Loan amounts begin at just £2,000, making this a reasonable option for someone looking for a minor bit of help while in a tight squeeze.

It is best to compare at least 3-4 offers from competing lenders before completing an application. Determine which offers the best deal, and consider whether the loan will help you accomplish your goals. If you believe it will be unaffordable to borrow money, then don’t apply for it. Emergency loans for paying rent or other living costs are only a good idea if they help you avoid delinquencies in the short term and defaults in the long term.


Discussions

clare says:

Hi there, my sister is expecting in a couple of months its her first child. Due to a relationship break down, she has decided to move back home to gain support from her family. The only trouble is due to changes in her benefit, loans she owes and other expenses, the landlord has not been paid and is asking for £700 loan to cover the outstanding rent arrears debt. This emergency needs to be cleared before the council move her. We are obviously running out of time. She gone through alot and really needs to be home with us.

Zoe says:

Hi, my name is Zoe. I got an eviction notice and need an emergency loan to pay the rental arrears. I have stayed in the bedsit as my rent has been paid up to date.
I am mentally unstable. I have a few health issues and feel that I have been bullied by a Tenant in the house as I know he has been the only person to complain about me. I feel the only reason for the complaining about me is that I have refused his advances on many occasions. This Tenant has alcohol issues and in the past has had no empathy for tenants with drugs addiction issues and has called for the landlord to change the tenancy agreement to evict persons who he says is on drugs. Even though the rent may be paid they want to evict.
I felt very uncomfortable with his attention and attitude towards me so I stayed with a new found friend, who billed me less rent. I came back home to the bedsit to find an eviction notice, I was not there to do something to be evicted. I basically got told by this tenant I have to be in the bedsit. I was away from the bedsit so I am living with someone else and don’t have the right to have my bedsit.
He had my landlord open my door with no notification and entered my bedsit as upon returning and finding the notice that had been slipped under my door. The tenant questioned me about furniture that I had brought with me as I was in hospital and had my belongings stolen from my bedsit so I was not taking any chances. He should not have known that my furniture (which I bought on a loan) had been moved, if my landlord had the right to enter my bedsit unannounced. I’m sure he had no right.
I have to move out to fix this emergency. I need a loan for that as I have no money for the deposit, months rent in advance, fee’s charged for various reasons. I have been violated, my mental health issues are worsening with stress. I am trapped and need help with moving, I believe that the bully of a tenant should be evicted from the building, not me.
He has told me that the landlord has a first in last out policy in the bedsit. I have been discriminated against them. I have no family and no longer have contact with the new found friend, I have done nothing to be evicted. I think he has, I have no one else to turn to ask for help on the rental costs and advice.

Lizz COPPIN says:

Hi,
I am a single mother of three girls. They are 21, 10 & 3 years old. I have had financial problems, including with rent as well as loans, since my husband left me and our children. I work as a nurse and I had to reduce my hours after I became unwell in the last 7 years.
I suffer with arthritis and have chronic back pain following back surgery. I am in a lot of debt and because I cant work as I did in the past I have rent arrears and now being taken to court for it. I really would like a grant to pay off some or all of the arrears and it will ensure that me and my daughters do not become evicted.
I have recently reapplied for housing benefit for my rent and have asked the weekly benefit be paid to the housing association directly. I also applied for other loans. Please can you advise me whether you can help me and my children.
Kind Regards,
Lizz

Zaqia Shafi says:

I am seeking help and advice on applying for a bond (or a loan) as I am getting evicted and I am in rent arrears. I am currently on Universal Credit and require help to move out of the current property. I can be contacted via telephone as I do not have regular access to the internet.

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