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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Rates

You must pay rent to your landlord in return for living in the property. If you stop paying your rent, are late with a payment or do not pay in full, your landlord may begin eviction proceedings against you.

The law sets out who is legally responsible for rates. If you're responsible for paying rates you should try to pay these directly to Land & Property Services or make sure that your landlord is passing on your rates payments to Land & Property Services

Get advice as soon as possible if you can't pay. The Land & Property Services have a strict procedure for recovering rates arrears. There are strict time limits. If you contact your local Land & Property Services office, you may be able to negotiate a payment plan.

A set of rules is used to work out how much help private tenants can get with their rent. These rules are known as Local Housing Allowance and are used by Universal Credit and Housing Benefit.  The LHA rules have been used since April 2008. Almost all private tenants have their rent help worked out under this system, but there are a few exceptions. 

The amount of benefits you will get depends on your personal circumstances, such as your income and savings, the size of your household and the area you live/wish to live in.

Rates can cause a huge headache for landlords and tenants. Make sure you understand who is responsible for paying these from the outset.

If your property is still subject to a mortgage or secured loan, you are responsible for ensuring those payments are up to date. You should clearly explain to your tenant who is liable for rates payments and keep your rates account up to date if it is your legal responsibility to do so.

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