Tenant grant fund update
From day one of the pandemic SAL, as part of the Scottish Government PRS Covid-19 resilience group, lobbied for support for tenants to be able to pay their rent and later for help for them to pay off Covid-19 related rent arrears.
We are therefore pleased that the Scottish Government has now distributed a new £10 million grant fund to local authorities which is to be used to support tenants who are struggling as a direct result of the pandemic. The grant funding is available from now until 31 March 2022. It can be used to pay off arrears which arose between 23 March 2020 and 9 August 2021 and the money is paid directly to the landlord.
Landlords with tenants in rent arrears should now contact the relevant local authority to apply to the fund.
Any tenants who have been financially impacted by the pandemic and need help to avoid eviction should contact their local authority housing options or homelessness departments to enquire about the grant. Landlords and letting agents can also initiate an enquiry on behalf of their tenants. There is no application process to use for the grant funding. Instead, local authorities will use their discretion to determine whether a grant payment is appropriate in individual circumstances.
The grant can be used to pay off arrears which arose between 23 March 2020 and 9 August 2021 and the money is paid directly to the landlord. Tenants will need to satisfy the local authority that they can afford future rent payments to sustain the tenancy once the grant is used to pay off arrears. Landlords must demonstrate that they are complying with the pre-action requirements for rent arrears and agree not to progress a repossession on the basis of Covid-19 related rent arrears where a grant is paid and the tenant meets all future agreed rent and repayment obligations.
Local authority contacts are below. We have contacted all local authorities and will update this list as and when more information is received.