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Homeless advice

There is help and advice available if you are at risk of losing your home. Below you can find information and some practical steps you can take with some of the most common problems people experience.

To contact us about a homeless emergency outside our opening hours, please call 0161 474 2818.

  • Asked to leave by friends or family

    Living with other people can be difficult. Sometimes people may end up being asked to leave home. The important thing is to try and do this in a planned way, as although things might seem bad at home – they could be even worse if you are not prepared for moving on or living alone.

    If you have been asked to leave by friends or family, our Mediation Scheme can help. The scheme works by negotiating with parents, friends or other relatives where someone has been asked to leave. It also looks at other housing options in the longer term. You can contact the service by emailing mediation.service@stockporthomes.org or calling 0161 217 6016.

  • Leaving care

    If you are leaving care your Social Worker can provide advice and support in planning where you will live in the future. This forms part of the 'pathway plan' they will have agreed with you looking at all aspects of your future. There are a number of options available, such as supported lodgings, sharing with friends, having your own tenancy, supported accommodation and halls of residence if you are going to University.

    If you have already left care, you may still be able to access the help of your Personal Advisor. They can help you with application forms for housing, benefits, and education and / or training courses.  Your Personal Advisor should stay in contact with you and provide ongoing support and help until you turn 21 or until your 25th birthday if you are still studying full-time. Get advice if you don't have a Personal Advisor from the links below.

    The following links provide further information:

  • Domestic abuse

    Domestic abuse can take many forms, ranging from outright violence to controlling behaviour and emotional cruelty. It affects men and women, in gay or straight relationships and from all walks of life.

    There is a help available and you should never suffer in silence, whether you wish to remain in your current home, take action to have a violent partner removed, or move somewhere new. The following links provide further advice:

    There is a partnership service in Stockport which offers help and support with domestic abuse, see the Alliance for Positive Relationships website for more information.

    If you need to know how to hide your internet tracks please visit Hide your tracks.

    However, if you are worried about your immediate safety, please call the Police on 999.

    The following leaflets provide an overview of some of the options available for remaining in your own home if this is the action you wish to take, or leaving safely.

    Domestic abuse housing options factsheet

    Domestic abuse women's refuges factsheet

  • Hospital discharges

    If you are going into hospital or have already been admitted and are worried about your accommodation, tell someone. The sooner staff at the hospital know, the sooner they will be able to signpost you to sources of support.

    Homelessness Charity H3 (Helping the Homeless into Housing) run a hospital discharge project in partnership with Stockport Homes. This project can visit you in hospital, and plan what help and support you will need to ensure you are not discharged with nowhere to live. You can find out more about the service and get in touch by visiting the H3 website

  • Members of the armed forces

    Stockport Armed Forces Covenant encourages support and provides a range of information for the Armed Forces community working or residing in Stockport. You can find out more information on the Stockport Council website.

    If you are facing homelessness upon being discharged from the Armed Forces, get in touch with the Homechoice Team at Stockport Homes. You will be asked for your letter of discharge, Notice to Vacate or other evidence that includes the date you are leaving, so help us to help you by having this information to hand.

  • Mortgage arrears

    We understand that sometimes your circumstances may change. You could have a change in income or your relationship may break down, which affects how much money you have.

    If you are behind with your mortgage, it is important to get seek help and speak to your lender as soon as possible. If you do not pay your mortgage you are at serious risk of losing your home. For free advice and help, please see the MyMoney pages.

    Homechoice have a dedicated officer who helps customers in mortgage difficulties explore all options available and they can be contacted on 0161 217 6016.

    The following links provide further advice:

    The following leaflets provide helpful advice on what to do if you are struggling with your mortgage.

    Are you worried about your mortgage leaflet

    Debt leaflet

  • Leaving prison

    Most prisons now have someone who can provide advice on housing options, and your Probation Officer should also be able to help. This can include trying to make sure you don't lose your home when you go into custody, through to planning for your release. If you aren’t sure what you are going to do, ask – the sooner professionals supporting you know, the sooner they can help. This may include liaising with Stockport Homes to explore your future housing options.

    The following leaflets provide helpful advice on both keeping your home, and potential housing options when you are released.

    Prisoners keeping your home factsheet

    Prisoners housing on release factsheet

    The following links provide further advice:

  • Asked to leave a private tenancy

    Notice to leave

    Landlords can bring tenancies to an end for various reasons, and in many cases don't even have to explain why. They do however have to follow a legal procedure, and are breaking the law if they do not do things properly. The following leaflets explain the process that landlords have to go through.

    Section 21 notices: procedure factsheet

    Section 21 notices: restrictions factsheet

    Section 21 notices: proceedings factsheet

    Illegal eviction

    If your landlord does not follow the correct legal procedure but still tries to make you leave, for example by changing the locks, this could be classed as an illegal eviction. The following leaflet provides useful advice on how to deal with this.

    Illegal eviction factsheet

    Affordability

    Sometimes you might not have received a notice, but are worried you might not be able to stay where you are due to struggling to meet the rent payments. If you are behind with your rent, it is important to seek help and speak to your landlord as soon as possible. If you do not pay your rent you are at serious risk of losing your home. For free advice and help, please see the My Money pages of our website.

    Harassment

    If you have concerns about how your landlord behaves – for example, if they are visiting your property unannounced and making unreasonable demands – the following leaflet provides useful advice on how to deal with this.

    Dealing with harassment factsheet

    Stockport Council also provide useful information on their website on dealing with various issues you might encounter with your landlord - see the harassment and illegal eviction by landlords page on its website.

  • Rent arrears

    We understand that sometimes your circumstances may change. You could have a change in income or your relationship may break down, which affects how much money you have.

    If you are behind with your rent, it is important to get help and speak to your landlord as soon as possible. If you do not pay your rent you are at serious risk of losing your home. For free advice and help, please see the MyMoney pages.

    The following organisations may also be able to help:

  • Rough sleepers

    If you see someone sleeping rough, please call us on 0161 217 6016 or email homechoice@stockporthomes.org with details of when and where you saw them and what they looked like. Working with partners we will arrange to visit them within 24 hours and look at what support can be offered to help them off the street.

    You can find out more information about support available to rough sleepers by visiting the Street Support website.

    Stockport Homes is delivering ‘A Bed Every Night’ provision alongside boroughs across Greater Manchester from November 2018 – March 2019. Please refer in as above.

  • Young people

    Leaving home is a big decision; family might be difficult to live with, but the reality of living on your own could be even harder. You need to consider:

    • how you will pay your bills;
    • how you will get to work, college or other commitments;
    • whether you will be lonely;
    • whether you might still have to share with other people to afford to live independently.

    For some young people, leaving home may seem like the only option but help is available to try and stop it reaching this point. This may differ depending on how old you are; for example Social Care will become involved if you are aged 16 or 17. You can find out more information about housing options for young people via the leaflets below.

    Homelessness: 16 and 17 year olds factsheet

    Homelessness: young people aged 18+

     

  • Other useful sources of advice

    Shelter

    Tel: 0808 800 4444

    Web: http://england.shelter.org.uk/

    Citizens Advice Bureau

    Tel: 08444 111 444

    Web: http://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/getadvice

    National Debt Line

    Tel: 0808 808 4000

    Web: http://www.nationaldebtline.co.uk/

    Direct.Gov (Money, Tax and Benefits)

    Web: http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/MoneyTaxAndBenefits/index.htm

    Civil Legal Advice

    Tel: 0845 345 4345 

    Web: https://www.gov.uk/civil-legal-advice

The Homechoice Team can help provide advice on these matters as well, and if you become homeless may be able to provide temporary accommodation. Please see the Homechoice page for more information.

You can also visit the Shelter website for advice about homelessness.

If you see someone sleeping rough, please call us on 0161 217 6016 or email homechoice@stockporthomes.org with details of when and where you saw them and what they looked like. Working with partners we will arrange to visit them within 24 hours and look at what support can be offered to help them off the street.

 

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Page last reviewed 14/11/2018