‘Rent-free weeks’ are stopping
We’re letting customers know that from April we’ll charge rent in every week of the year.
It means the weekly rent charge will be slightly less – but there won’t be any rent free weeks. The annual rent charge won’t increase – we’re just spreading the rent over every week of the year.
Previously, we took a customer’s total annual rent and divided this over 50 weekly payments. This meant that there were two weeks - one in December and one in March - where we didn’t apply a charge to the rent account. These were sometimes called ‘ rent-free weeks ’, although their amount had already been included in the total annual rent.
From April 2019 we’ll charge rent every week of the year. The last rent free week will be in March 2019.
Customers will receive a letter during the week of 25 February with more information about this. This will explain their rent and other charges for the year ahead, and will include our 'rent free weeks' are stopping leaflet [pdf] 39KB, which has answers to common questions about this change.
We’re making this change now to simplify the way we charge rent, in particular for those who receive Universal Credit, so that the Department for Work and Pensions can see a rent charge in every week of the year.
Are Direct Debit payments affected?
No. If you pay by Direct Debit, your weekly or monthly payments will carry on as usual.