• Sarah Tempest

Money Worries? We Can Help.

There’s no doubt that the Coronavirus Pandemic is causing much anxiety, not just for our health, but for our livelihoods too.

Rooftop’s Money Advice Team is taking enquiries from worried customers and are here to help you manage your budget, claim benefits and point you in the direction of extra help being offered during Covid-19.

Here are some of the common questions our advisers are being asked:

Q There is no point in claiming Universal Credit as I am not entitled to anything.

A Don’t assume this! Always get a benefits check done. The money advisors are more than happy to do a calculation. We have had many examples of customers thinking they will not be entitled and they have been surprised to find they are. Please get checked out properly

Q My accountant says I will not get anything.

A The best people to ask are those in the business of benefits and who understand entitlement and how benefits are calculated, so make sure you check and don’t take an unqualified person’s word for it!

Q I am on a zero hours contract and cannot get furloughed.

A This is incorrect. If you were on a PAYE payroll on 19 March, you can request furlough. The amount will be 80% of your average wage over the last 12 months or 80% of the amount you earned in the same month last year, whichever is highest, up to a monthly cap of £2,500.

Q I am furloughed, I will not get anything.

A Let the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) decide this, don’t assume you can’t. Make a claim for Universal Credit and the DWP will adjust your entitlement according to payments received (they check with HMRC and always know what you have as earned income)

Q Can I get help with my Council Tax?

A Make an application for Council Tax support via your local authority (LA) or give them a call. The LAs are there to help you and for those already in receipt of Council Tax support you may get additional help. They are allowing you to pay over 12 months rather than 10 months.

Q I am on pre-payment meters for gas and electric, I can’t go out to top up, what do I do?

A Contact your utility company, they can send out vouchers for you, you will need to pay this back. This is easier if the company can do it remotely, if not, they will charge to do this.

Q I’m worried about Bank charges on my planned/unplanned overdraft.

A Speak to your bank at your earliest convenience, they will be able to advise you on what they can do to help you. Many banks are reducing or eliminating overdraft fees for an agreed sum.

Q I have a loan/ credit card and cannot afford the repayments.

A Speak to your loan company/ credit card company, they will advise if you can take a payment holiday or lower payments for a period of time. Many companies are modifying repayment rules during Covid-19

If you have any financial worries or need money advice, please contact our Money Advisers. We are here to help.

Visit our web page

https://www.rooftopgroup.org/money-advice or email money.advice@rooftopgroup.org

or call 01386 420800 and ask for the Money Advisers.

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