Skip to main content

Being in control of your finances

In every Connected magazine, we like to remind you about the Money Matters service. It is your service and is there to help you. Now more than ever, please don’t feel shy about contacting us if you’re feeling concerned about money. The Money Matters team are well trained to offer you specialist advice and support. To demonstrate how, we have some real life examples below.

 

What can Money Matters help with?

Benefits support – making claims, appeals and more.
Energy bills and home finance.
Employment and training – writing your CV, filling out job applications.
Managing debt.

The service is free to use for all Connect residents. Get in touch with them at:

0300 5000 600 
hello@connecthousing.org.uk
connecthousing.org.uk

How has Money Matters helped Connect residents with their benefits?

Real Life Story #1
Struggling with disability and illness, a Connect resident was receiving what they thought were the correct benefits from the Department for Work and Pensions. Unfortunately, they found out they had been receiving less than they were entitled to.

Realising this, the Money Matters team worked closely with them, helping them through

the process of having their benefits reassessed and were delighted to help them receive a payment of £22,000 in backdated benefits.

Real Life Story #2
This resident thought they had informed Universal Credit that their address had changed when they moved into a Connect home back in December 2021. However, they were shocked to find that this wasn’t the case.

After being bounced back and forth by Universal Credit and Housing Benefit whilst trying to solve the problem, they decided to get in touch with Money Matters for help. The team sought specialist advice and helped the resident write to Universal Credit, appealing to backdate the costs. A few weeks later the resident was delighted to receive a lump sum of £5,000 helping them clear their rent arrears.

Real Life Story #3
Stopping work due to illness is worrying for anyone and for this resident it was no different. Their Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) would not help them to continue making ends meet after they could no longer work, so they called Money Matters for support.

The team helped them speak to their energy companies and bill providers to make payments easier and got them onto Universal Credit once the SSP stopped. They also secured them a vital Personal Independence Payment and they are now in a much more stable position with less worries.

There is some help and support available to you 

Energy Bills Support Scheme
This scheme is a £400 discount for all households with a domestic electricity connection. You don’t need to apply for this. The discount will be taken off your bill each month. This started in October 2022 and will go until March 2023.

Prepayment meters
If you are on a prepayment meter you are still eligible for the energy support scheme. Contact your supplier to find out if your energy support is an automatic top up, or sent to you as vouchers.

Cost Of Living Payment
If you’re getting certain benefits or tax credits you may be able to get a payment to help with the cost of living. These will be paid to you automatically in the same way as your benefits and tax credits. Head to: gov.uk/guidance/cost-of-living-payment to find out if you qualify and when you can expect your payments.

 

Easy steps you can take
You can check if you are receiving all the benefits you are entitled to by completing a quick check at:

turn2us.org.uk/get-support
gov.uk/browse/benefits

If you can’t get online, give us a call and we can do this over the phone with you.

You could also look at your outgoings. Is there anywhere you can make some savings? Is your phone or internet contract ending soon? Could you get some cheaper home insurance? It’s always worth checking in case there’s something you could cut out.

There are plenty of organisations out there that can help you on saving on your energy bills, getting into employment, etc. If you can’t find any, contact us and we can help.

A few quick ways you can save around the house

Yorkshire Water have a web page dedicated to making savings on water. This could be especially helpful if you’re on a water meter. Head to yorkshirewater.com/your-water/save-water where you can get advice, a free water saving pack or even a free Flushsaver.

Always look for light bulbs with the lowest wattage. LED bulbs can save you up to £6 per bulb per year. You’re also always better turning lights off when you leave the room.

Many appliances have an ‘eco’ mode. We recommend using this on things like washing machines. This often means they work at a slower speed and lower heat, which will save you on your energy bill.

All sorts of advice is out there at the tip of your fingers so we recommend havingaquick search of the web for more tips. However, always factcheck the advice as best you can! Not all of it is always correct.

How to work out the cost of appliances in your home

It’s not too hard to work out how much electrical appliances cost in your home. The cost of electricity is roughly 34p per kW (1000W). Check how many watts your appliance uses and you can work out how much it will cost you.

How many watts? – check on the appliance how many watts it uses e.g. the front of the microwave will say ‘850W’.

What’s a kilowatt? –a kilowatt is 1000W, you’ll need to know this.

What’s the cost of electricity? – it’s roughly 34p per kilowatt per hour.

So, an 100W appliance on for 2 hours is 3.4p multiplied by 2 = 6.8p

Related posts

Copyright © Connect Housing

Connect Housing Association Limited is a charitable association registered in England and Wales under the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act 2014 (Company No. IP17445R) and with the Regulator of Social Housing (No. L2285).

Privacy statement | Disclaimer | Terms and conditions