Struggling with money

Struggling with money

We know things are really tough right now and we want to help.

Can’t afford food, rent and heating?

If you’ve not got enough money coming in to pay for your food, rent and heating please get in touch with us. There’s lots we can do to help, and we know lots of organisations that can help you too. If you’re having problems paying your rent, rest assured we take a very supportive approach and we’ll help you to get you back into credit.

If you can’t pay your rent

Every now and then we all have problems with money. It’s normal, but it can also be very worrying especially if we’re struggling to pay for essentials like food and rent.

Get in touch

If you’re having problems and can’t pay your rent on time please, please let us know as soon as you can. To help us support you as quickly as possible, please complete our help with living costs form. This information will help us see the best ways we can support you. We’ll be back in touch with you in 3 working days.

You can also contact us by phone and other ways if you’d like to talk it through with us.

How we can help

We can help in several ways:

  • Together we can agree on a manageable plan to help you through the difficult period and get you back into credit with your rent
  • We can arrange a free session with Citizens Advice where you can receive expert advice
  • If you’re looking for work, we can also provide support with getting back into work.
  • Try our budgeting and benefits calculator, to find out if you’re getting all the financial support you are entitled to. It can also help you understand how you are spending your money and offers tips for making savings and increasing your income.

Will I be evicted?

We’ll do everything we can to stop that from happening. The quicker you contact us about any problems, the quicker we can help you back into credit.

Independent advice

There’s some really helpful advice on the Help with rent arrears and problems with paying your rent page on the Money Advice Service website. This is an independent website with helpful advice and good suggestions.

You can also contact your local Citizen’s Advice for independent advice.

Ways to lower your energy costs

We know that the huge rise in energy costs is causing many households to struggle.

We’re working hard to make all of our homes energy efficient, but here are some things you can do to lower your energy costs.

At a time when energy costs are rising, there are some small changes that can make a big difference when it comes to reducing the amount we are spending on heating and electricity bills. They may sound really simple, but even little changes can help.

1.    Switch off standby

Almost all electrical appliances can be turned off at the socket switch without upsetting their programming. You can save around £55 per year by remembering to turn your appliances off standby mode – but remember to check the details of your appliances before turning them off.

2.    Turn off lights

Turning your lights off when you’re not using them or when you leave a room could save around £20 a year on your annual energy bills.

3.    Switch to energy-efficient light bulbs

Switching to energy efficient LED light bulbs can reduce bills by £30. LEDs also have a longer lifespan of around 34 years, compared to just over one year for incandescent bulbs.

4.    Wash clothes at a lower temperature

Washing clothes at 30˚C saves around 40% of the energy that gets used when washing at higher temperature. Reducing your washing machine use – e.g., by avoiding washing half loads – will also reduce energy costs.

5.    Avoid overfilling the kettle

Only filling as much water as you need when boiling the kettle can around save £11 per year.

6.    Take shorter showers

Keeping your shower time to just 4 minutes could save a typical household £65 a year on their energy bills.

7.    Budgeting in the summer

If you have a pre-payment meter, it can be helpful to budget energy costs in the summer in order to manage increased energy consumption and costs during the winter.

8.    Download the free Herts Energy Saving Advice (HEAT) app

The HEAT app is for all Hertfordshire residents, designed to take you through your home and identify how you may be able to reduce your energy use, and in turn save you money. The app is available for both Android and iPhone users – on  Google Play and the App Store.

How we and others can help you

From time to time we can all find ourselves in debt or have money problems, but for some people debt can threaten their health, well-being and even their home.

If you feel like your debt or money situation is unmanageable, the best thing to do is talk about it with someone you trust and who can help you in a responsible way.

Here are a few organisations that can offer or help you find free, impartial and good advice.

Us

At settle, we have a dedicated team that can help. Just contact us and we’ll arrange for someone to visit you or you can visit us.

Claiming benefits

It could be that you’re entitled to Housing Benefit or other benefits. Try using one of the benefit calculators below:

If you need help applying for benefits please contact us.

Citizens’ Advice

Citizens’ Advice (previously called The Citizens’ Advice Bureau) can give you specific help with debt and budgeting.

Step change

If you’d like to speak to someone over the phone and/or anonymously you can contact the debt charity Step Change.

AskCPAG – Financial Help for Families

The Financial Help for Families e-book can provide assistance in maximising incomes or dealing with a benefit problem as well as other useful tips.

Related pages

Support with mental health

Simple meals

Getting into work

More support from settle