Assistance of a maximum of £5000 plus vat and fees to enable dangerous hazards (disrepair) to be removed from a property. This is not grant aid, but financial assistance provided for the duration of the recipient’s occupancy of the property.
What work does this cover?
Emergency Home Repair Assistance is intended to help with urgent works of repair, for the vulnerable and/or elderly with the aim of removing high risk hazards. This assistance is for small scale works and not for use as a contribution towards more extensive works where renovating the property would be more appropriate.
The type of work which may be eligible is that which can cause serious, unexpected, and potentially dangerous situations requiring immediate action to a dwelling and could include the following;
- securing the basic fabric of the property from the entry of wind or rain
- protecting the occupants from immediate exposure to danger
- repairs to windows and doors
- defective drainage
- dangerous wiring
The above are only some examples of what the assistance can be used for. The eligible works will be determined by an officer who will visit the property to carry out a Housing Health and Safety Risk Assessment. This will determine whether the works carry a high enough risk to qualify for the grant aid.
The following people will be eligible to apply with no test of financial resources carried out:
- Owner occupiers over 65 with savings of less than £15,000
- Tenants over 65 with life interest or have a long lease (repairing obligations) in a property, with savings of less than £15,000
- Clients needing palliative care and/or to enable early release from hospital
People over 18 and under 65 will be eligible to apply if they meet the following criteria:
- Owner occupier, or
- Tenant who has a long lease (repairing obligations)
- be in receipt of a means tested benefit including: Income Support, income based Job-Seeker’s Allowance, Income based employment and support allowance, Guaranteed Pension Credit, Universal Credit, Housing Benefit, Council Tax benefit, Child Tax Credit or Working Tax Credit for which his/her income has been calculated to be less than the sum determined annually by DWP for means-tested purposes (currently £15,860) or Universal Credit
- Applicants whose primary place of residence is at the property, but not in receipt of the income-related benefits above, will be subject to the Reduction in Grant Regulation ‘means test’. Applicants whose contribution is calculated as less than £1,000 (one thousand pounds) will be eligible and will contribute the calculated amount towards the cost of the works
The applicant must live in the dwelling as their only or main residence and have an owner’s interest in the dwelling, or be a tenant of the dwelling alone or jointly with others and have a ‘duty or power’ to carry out the works in question (e.g. in the case of tenants, the landlord usually has the duty or ‘repairing obligation’ and not the tenant), or occupy the dwelling under a right of exclusive occupation granted for life.
In respect of a mobile home the occupier must also satisfy a 3 year residential qualifying period.
A check will be carried out as to whether any relevant assistance has been paid previously to ensure that not more than £5,000 plus fees plus VAT is given in any three year period. The Local Authority cannot pay for the same work twice.
How much will I get?
The maximum amount is set at £5,000 plus any vat plus any associated fees (such as administration, arrangement or agent fees) in a 3 year period.
The amount will be determined by the department and will depend upon quotes obtained as well as any fees that you may need to pay. You need to wait for notification of the award before beginning any work. Payment for the work will be upon receipt of invoice and is usually made straight to the contractor, after inspection.
How will I organise the work?
The Local Authority has a supervisory service to help applicants to make an application for assistance. The supervisory service will measure up the property to produce a scheme of work, including drawings where necessary, obtain quotes for the work, including for specialist equipment, and sort out any issues as they arise. They will help you to fill in the application form and sort out the financial information that you may need to provide. On application by the applicant, consideration will be given to waive this supervisory service.
Emergency Repair Assistance conditions, including repayment
- The condition period remains in force until the assistance is repaid
- The applicant must intend to live in the property as their only or main residence for the condition period
- The works should be completed within 12 months of the approval, unless otherwise authorised
- Payments will be made retrospectively, upon invoice, and after inspection of the works
- A local land charge will be placed on the property that will bind the applicant and any successors in title for the condition period. This charge will be registered in the local land charges register and thereafter registered with the Land Registry
- Full repayment of funding given through this scheme will be required in the event of transfer or sale of the property
In cases of suspected fraud or deception - It is the policy of the authority to actively pursue, identify and investigate suspected instances of fraud and deception.