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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

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If you receive certain income-related benefits, you may be entitled to some help with the interest payments on loans secured on your home. Normally, you will have to serve a 39 week waiting period before you will start to receive this financial help and not all loans will qualify for this financial assistance. This financial assistance is called Support for Mortgage Interest. From 6 April 2018 any payments made to help homeowners with the interest charges on loans or mortgages will be in the form of an interest-bearing loan and may have to be repaid. 

There are rules about who can and who cannot claim Universal Credit. 

Speak to someone urgently if you’re being abused in your home. Call Women's Aid for help and support on 0808 802 1414. Women’s Aid is the number one charity that helps people affected by domestic abuse. It provides help, advice and counselling to men and women. In an emergency call 999 for help.

Whether you own your home or rent it, you need to have contents insurance. Homeowners will also need to have buildings insurance and may have to have life assurance as part of the conditions of their mortgage. Insurance protects you against risk. In return for this cover, you pay a premium to the insurance company. You can usually pay your premiums in a lump sum or in monthly deduction

Make sure you know where your land ends and your neighbour’s begins. Disputes over boundaries can cause formerly friendly relationships to sour.

The Housing Executive will consider you in priority need if you are particularly vulnerable. If you are homeless, eligible for assistance and the Housing Executive thinks you may be in priority need you can get temporary accommodation while it completes the investigation.

Discrimination and equality law sets out certain things that service providers have to do to provide access to their services. This can include providing information about their services in other languages or adapting services and accommodation so that they are suitable for people with disabilities.

The process for selling a home is generally the same for all people, whatever the reason for the sale. Most people will use an agent to market the property and you will have to pay a fee for this. You can sell your home privately but it can be harder to find buyers this way.

Not everyone who pays rent for a room or a property is a tenant. Some only have a license to remain in that property and are “licensees”. Licensees don't have as many rights as tenants and it's much easier to evict them.

In extremely limited circumstances the Housing Executive may work with a housing association to purchase a property for a person if they have complex needs and have spent a long time on the waiting list without receiving offers. This is known as the Special Acquisition of Dwellings.

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