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Housing

GUEST ACCOMMODATION BETWEEN 4-6 MONTHS 
The Government has issued specific national guidance regarding living arrangements from 4-6 months after Ukrainian guests have moved to the UK. 

Between 4-6 months into the agreement, hosts and guests are being encouraged to have an open and honest conversation about intentions and next steps.

If this has not happened yet in your arrangement and you have been staying with your host for several months, we encourage you to have this conversation. Each arrangement will be different and it may be that your host is happy for you to continue to stay with them (or in their accommodation) for a longer period of time. Where this is the case, this is likely to be the best option for you until you are ready to move on.  



GUEST ACCOMMODATION – SIX MONTHS AND BEYOND
Government guidance for hosts and guests sets out the options available to Homes for Ukraine guests and sponsors/hosts who need to end the arrangement after six months.

Although social housing (council housing) is not a realistic option for Homes for Ukraine guests there are other options available:

  • Where possible, continue in the existing arrangement
  • Where the existing arrangement cannot continue, a guest can find a new host in or out of Lincolnshire. Many people are finding re-matches through faith groups, other community groups, their work or your current host. If you find a new host this way, please email homesforukraine@lincolnshire.gov.uk with details so we can start the necessary checks. The organisations below can also help with finding a new host in other areas of the country.  You can also find more advice on how to find a new host within the Government guidance. If you are unable to find a new host yourself, please email Ukraine.wellbeing@e-lindsey.gov.uk
  • Where a guest is considering independent accommodation, they can look to rent private accommodation in or out of Lincolnshire (see below for more information)
  • If it is safe and they wish to do so, guests can return to Ukraine (which we are finding that some guests are choosing to do). Please inform homesforukraine@lincolnshire.gov.uk if you intend to do this.

 

RENTAL ACCOMMODATION
You can find independent private rental accommodation. This does not have to be in Lincolnshire, you can move anywhere in the UK. You will need to find a property to rent, gather all the information such as the rent, deposit, how much the bills cost, and if the property is furnished. You may be entitled to assistance in the form of the housing element of Universal Credit. You would only receive this after you move into the property.

You can find more advice on renting within the ‘Guidance for Guests’ link above or via the links below:

And don’t forget that you can contact Wellbeing Lincs if you need any advice or support - for more information about the Wellbeing Lincs service, visit our National and Local Guidance section.

SOCIAL HOUSING
Social Housing (or Council Housing) in Lincolnshire is not a realistic option because there are very few properties available and long waiting lists already. However, if you wish to, you can still contact your local District Council for local advice. You can find your district council here: Find your local council - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

GENERAL ADVICE
These organisations can give you general independent advice about housing and homelessness:


WHAT TO DO IF YOU BECOME HOMELESS

In the unlikely event that you are asked to leave your host accommodation immediately, have nowhere else to go and need assistance, you can contact your local District Council Homeless Team. For more information about District Councils, visit our National and Local Guidance section.

 

How to rent in England

Do you want to know more about renting in England? The government's 'How to rent' checklist is now available in Ukrainian and Russian, as well as English

For guests who are hoping to rent their own property in England, here are some tips from other Ukrainian guests that have already been successful in signing a tenancy:

  1. Whilst you are living with a host, you may be contributing to bills and buying food but you will not be paying rent. Use the time with your host to save up towards a deposit (at least two months' rent payments) and money for any furniture you might need when you move into your own home. Without a UK credit history, landlords may ask for up to six months' rent in advance.
  2. Learning English will help you to find work and also communicate with a landlord or letting agent. You can do this at face-to-face classes or online - find a course near you.
  3. Landlords or letting agents will often want to check credit history. You could open a savings account with your bank and save a certain amount every month to demonstrate that you can manage your finances and do it on a regular basis (like paying rent).
  4. If you are on benefits or a low income you might be able to get the housing costs element of Universal Credit. You could work this out before so it helps you understand how much rent you can afford to pay.
  5. Lots of people are looking for private rented homes right now and it is very competitive. Talk to your host about your plans as they may be able to give you advice about where to look locally. Look online every day but also visit local estate agents face-to-face and talk to friends at your nearest community group. Someone you know may know a private landlord who could be willing to help you. Some useful websites are OpenRent, Rightmove, Socciio and SpareRoom
  6. Be as flexible as you can be and search for homes in a wider geographical area.
  7. Get in touch if you need further help and advice at ukraine.wellbeing@e-lindsey.gov.uk or your local district council.

We are also looking to engage private landlords specifically around renting to Ukrainian guests, so if you are a private landlord or know one, we’d be very keen to hear from you.

So far, we're aware of 65 Ukrainian families or individuals who have already successfully ‘moved on’ into private rented accommodation across the county. If you're able to share any experiences of accessing the private rental market in Lincolnshire, please let us know at homesforukraine@lincolnshire.gov.uk.

Model licence/tenancy agreements for hosts and guests

Some hosts find it useful to sign an agreement with their guests so everyone is clear on the terms of their stay. This can help with setting boundaries and outlining dos and don’ts for both parties. Certain mortgage lenders may also ask for an agreement to be signed (check with your lender).

If your guests are sharing accommodation with you, for example using guest bedrooms and sharing a kitchen with you, the Excluded Licence Agreement is most suitable:

If your guests are living in self-contained accommodation (such as a holiday let) then the Excluded Tenancy Agreement is most suitable:

Moving into rental accommodation – registering with utility companies  

We know that many guests are now starting to move into their own rental accommodation and will need help registering with utility companies. We hope the information and links below are useful and recommend contacting the Citizens Advice consumer helpline for further help and support.

Types of utilities

Gas and Electricity

The Citizens Advice website has useful pages on:

Water

In Lincolnshire, most homes are with Anglian Water but you can check your supplier on the Water UK website.

The Anglian Water website also has a dedicated ‘moving home’ page.

For hosts and guests, if anyone living in your property receives certain benefits or tax credits, you could be eligible for the AquaCare Plus or WaterSure tariffs. Visit the Anglian Water website or call 03457 919 155 to apply.

Council Tax

The government website includes information on how to set up a new Council Tax account on a property you have recently moved into.

Broadband

The Uswitch website has a helpful page on broadband and moving house.

Paying bills

The Money Helper website has a useful page on the best way to pay bills.

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