The government has announced that people in receipt of Housing Benefit will receive an extra 2 weeks’ support with their rent when they move onto Universal Credit.
New Universal Credit claimants already getting support with their housing costs will continue to receive Housing Benefit for 2 weeks after their claim ends, to help them transition onto Universal Credit.
This non-recoverable extra support is worth an average £233 and is set to help around 2.3 million people when they move onto Universal Credit.
Work and Pensions Secretary of State Esther McVey said: “Universal Credit has been specifically designed to be simpler and provide better personalised employment support. It ensures all benefits get paid in one monthly payment, so you won’t be getting separate amounts from different agencies for housing or tax credits.
However, we understand that moving onto Universal Credit can be a big change for those used to the previous benefits system – especially the monthly payment, designed to reflect the world of work. So this week, extra rent support is being made available to allow people to adjust from fortnightly Housing Benefit payments to monthly Universal Credit ones.
Universal Credit removes the barriers which prevented people from taking up work in the past, most notably the 16 hour cut off rule and the prohibitive tax rates should someone start work. Instead, Universal Credit ensures it pays to take on extra hours of work, and provides additional employment support to not only help get you into a job but also progress up the career ladder.”