Anyone can become homeless » Babergh Mid Suffolk

Posted by Communications on 7 October 2022 | Comments

In recognition of World Homelessness Day, Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils are encouraging residents to challenge their view as to the type of people that can become homeless or what homelessness looks like.

The perception of homelessness is often someone male, single and sleeping on the street, people with drug and alcohol issues, or people who have caused an issue and have been asked to leave their accommodation.

Homelessness can affect anyone – because of a range of everyday circumstances

  • Family/friends no longer able to accommodate
  • Loss of private-rented accommodation
  • Fleeing violence, including domestic abuse
  • Loss of social-rented accommodation
  • Relationship breakdown

Cllr Jan Osborne, Babergh District Council’s cabinet member for Housing said:

“The reality is that anyone can become homeless. It’s important that we recognize that it can happen to anyone, from all walks of life. Having a home is so much more than just a roof over your head, it’s a place where you should feel safe and secure.

“Losing your home is a very difficult time for everyone, Our Housing teams are on hand to offer support any residents that find themselves at risk of losing their home.

“Anyone who finds themselves in this critical situation is encouraged to contact our Housing Solutions team as soon as possible to get the help and support they need.“

Cllr Lavinia Hadingham, Mid Suffolk District Council’s cabinet member for Housing said:

“Our vision is to prevent anyone having to face the risk of having to sleep on the streets.  Early intervention is essential in helping residents to find a solution alongside the understanding that it can happen to anyone.

“There will never be a ‘one size fits all’ solution for everyone, which is why it is so important for any resident at risk of or finding themselves homeless and having to sleep on the streets to speak to our team as soon as they are concerned about their situation.

“Any resident struggling with the cost of living and needs advice on the housing or support options available, should contact the Housing Solutions Team, and discuss the available options.“

If you need help or support please contact out housing solutions team on 0300 123 4000 or email housingsolutions@baberghmidsuffolk.gov.uk.

 

Homelessness Data

  • Between May 2019 to June 2022 in Babergh and Mid Suffolk District councils: 3532 Homelessness applications made
  • We supported 1892 households that are homeless or at risk of being made homeless – fulfilling the councils Prevention or Relief Duty
  • 877 households were prevented from being homeless
  • We were able to help 259 remain in their home or obtain alternative accommodate.

Homelessness scenarios 1

During the year our Housing Solutions team supported a family of four, with two working partners and two children.

The family owned their own home with a mortgage.

With mounting pressures of caring for a child with disabilities and increasing financial pressures, the family over a 2-year period started to fall into arrears with their mortgage, also experienced bouts of depression, leaving them unable to tackle the financial situation.

Because they did not feel able to face their growing money challenges in the early stages, things got considerably worse. They contacted a mortgage company but did not feel able to agree a repayment plan, and faced losing their home and becoming homeless.

Meeting with the Housing support team they were able to get advice and guidance on:

  • How to maximize their income and how to apply for Child Benefit and disability living allowance to help support the additional needs, their child needed.
  • Exploring ways to address their mortgage arrears
  • Investigate alternative housing options
  • Working with the councils’ Central Suffolk Lettings they were able to carry out an affordability assessment and registered on the Gateway Homechoice.

Outcome:

The family were able to secure a property in the private rented sector and their homelessness no longer facing the risk.

Homelessness scenarios 2

An older couple, experiencing health condition partner and unable to work.

They are received a pension, Personal Independent Payments and Self-employed low-income support.

They lived in private rented sector in the same property for 30 years, served with a section 21 eviction notice as the landlord was selling the property.

Meeting with the Housing support team they were able to get advice and guidance on; 

  • They were made aware of their rights as private tenants.
  • alternative housing options based on their circumstances
  • They were registered on the Gateway Homechoice, as residents threatened with homelessness.

Outcome:

They have now moved into a sheltered bungalow, with a secure tenancy.

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