Families local to Wolverhampton can apply for one of two different loan programmes. The money available, which can be as much as £400, is used to pay for living expenses. Any assistance is aimed at solving a crisis, such as lack of heat, food, housing, or other needs that could make the family unsafe.
The two options in the city include the Welfare Assistance Loans as well as crisis loans. Both of these schemes are provided by the Wolverhampton City Credit Union in partnership with the council. There are also two ways to apply for money for paying critical bills, and they include the Citizen’s Advice centre as well as the credit union itself. The telephone numbers to ring are listed below.
Welfare loan scheme
The Welfare Assistance Loan is part of the central government scheme for helping individuals or families that are living in poverty and/or that are on benefits. The amount available will range from £100 to £400. This scheme, which uses government funds, is only for individuals with a health or safety issue or that may be forced to be homeless or move into an institution without help. So housing and energy needs are covered. This determination of exactly what bills will be paid will be made by the Credit Union following guidelines that the council has in place.
The money can be used to solve the crisis. The team at the Wolverhampton City Credit Union can go over the criteria, but it can pay for food, rental arrears, electric or heating costs, or even health care bills. The credit union may even allow the money to pay used for transportation costs, such as for commuting to work or paying for a car repair. Anything to end the crisis can be covered. The credit union may allow the money for housing, or have other linkage to loans for paying rent.
The money is paid out using a pre-paid Visa Card, which provides the borrower with flexibility. The Wolverhampton Welfare Assistance Loan needs to be repaid in about 52 weeks. The interest rate will be low, around 5 to 10 percent. So the interest rate is much lower than other loans that are available, such as payday or credit card companies.
Wolverhampton crisis loans
This form of financial assistance is only for people that are on some form of benefits. The maximum amount that can be borrowed is lower, and it can be as much as £200 if needed. The applicant needs to be on a government benefits, including (but not limited to) Jobseeker’s Allowance, Universal Credit, Local Housing Allowance, or Employment and Support Allowance. When the person is on a benefit, the crisis loan is part of the hardship programme that is available.
An applicant to the crisis loan also needs to have a low income, be over the age of 18, have an urgent need, and agree to open a Credit Union Account. The council sets the rules for this form of assistance, but the Credit Union team will also assess the application.
One of the key differences between the Crisis and Welfare loans are the repayment period. The crisis scheme allows only 21 weeks for the money to be repaid at an interest rate of about 5%. So the cost to the borrower is lower, but the repayment period is shorter.
Also crisis loans are available in the city of Wolverhampton for paying certain bills only. The council will allow the family to pay heating costs or buy food. Or another small dollar bills (that are related to health or safety) can also be repaid.
The two places to ring (or drop in) for more information include the Wolverhampton Citizen’s Advice, and the telephone number is 01902 572006. Anyone that is interested in a larger amount of money from welfare should call on the Wolverhampton City Credit Union, and their number is 01902 555939. Not only will low-interest loans be provided for paying bills, but other advice is also given around debt help, applying for benefits, and other services.