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Further information

You can contact the Mortgage Arrears Information Helpline on 0761 07 4050

Overview: For tenants

You may be finding it hard to keep up with your rent. If you are in this situation, there are several sources of information, advice and help.

Where to get advice and help

Threshold provides an independent advisory and advocacy service, which is free and confidential. You can contact Threshold if you are having problems with your landlord.

MABS, the Money Advice and Budgeting Service, provides information and advice on dealing with rent arrears as well as other forms of problem debt.

You can also contact your local Citizens Information Centre for face-to face information and advice, phone the Citizens Information Phone Service on Lo-call 0761 07 4000, Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm, or log on to the Citizens Information website.

For people renting privately

Rent Supplement is a payment for people living in private rented accommodation who cannot afford to pay the full rent themselves. In general, if your only income is a social welfare payment, you will qualify for a Rent Supplement. However, if you or your partner is in full-time employment (30 hours a week or more) you will not qualify for this payment.

If you are paying tax on your income, you may be entitled to claim tax relief on your rent. You will only be able to claim tax relief on your rent if you were already renting on 7 December 2010.

Most private tenants have specific rights under the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (pdf). However, if you are sharing accommodation with your landlord or living in student accommodation let by a recognised educational institution, you are not covered by this legislation.

For social housing tenants

People who are renting from a local authority pay what is called a "differential rent", which is calculated on the basis of ability to pay. If your income is reduced you should immediately ask your local authority to adjust your rent downwards.

Housing associations also take your income into account when calculating your rent. You should contact your landlord about reducing your rent if you are a tenant of a housing association or co-operative and your income has been reduced.

If you find that you are falling into arrears with your rent, contact your landlord straight away.

Losing your home

Whether you are renting from a private landlord, a local authority or a housing association, they can evict you if you fall behind with the rent, provided they follow the correct procedure. This is usually their very last resort. Here we describe what to do if you lose your home.

Last edited: 04/02/2013