The latest Northern Ireland Housing Bulletin shows that there has been an increase of 16% (687) in the number of households presenting as homeless to the Housing Executive, compared to the previous quarter.
Solicitor Chris McGrath discusses some recent Housing Rights cases where victims of domestic violence and intimidation have been required to fulfil the requirements of the introductory tenancy scheme despite being long standing secure tenants.
Eamonn McLaughlin is one half of Housing Rights’s Housing Possession Court Duty Scheme. Eamonn and his colleague Maria travel across Northern Ireland offering free representation services to tenants and homeowners who have come to court to deal with mortgage or rent arrears. Here, Eamonn discusses a recent morning at court when he met Grace, a Housing Executive tenant who’d fallen behind on her rent.
Carmel Ferguson, solicitor with Housing Rights, looks at a UK Court of Appeal cases which considered whether the value of a care facility resident's home could be disregarded if the resident's child intended to return to live in it at a later date.
At the end of June 2015 over 42,000 private landlords had registered with the NI landlord registration registrar. These landlords have provided details of over 89,000 private tenancies. Using information from the 2011 census, the Department for Social Development suggests that roughly 94% of landlords have complied with the requirement to register.
Private landlords who fail to register may face a fixed penalty of £500 or a fine of up to £2,500.
A round up of housing related questions answered by the Minister for Social Development during June 2015
Eligibility for the Affordable Warmth Scheme
To ask the Minister for Social Development whether he plans to revise the guidelines for eligibility to the Affordable Warmth Scheme to exclude Disability Living Allowance as part of the income threshold. Mrs Dolores Kelly (SDLP - Upper Bann) AQW 47005/11-15
The interest rate used to calculate how much help homeowners can get towards the interest on their mortgage is falling to 3.12% from 6 July 2015. It's important that any homeowners who receive this payment as part of their benefits understand how this change will affect them.