Paying your rent
Payments must be arranged so that your account is never in arrears.
When paying your rent, you must use your ten digit tenancy number as a reference. New tenants will need to allow seven days for a reference number to be generated.
New or transferring tenants are required to pay one weeks rent charge upfront before they receive the keys to their new home.
Pay by direct debit
This is the easiest and simplest way to pay.
The Council collects direct debits monthly, on the 15th or 28th of each month (or next working day) or fortnightly on a Friday.
The amount payable will automatically alter to take into account any changes to your rent. The Council can automatically adjust the amount collected to take into account these changes.
You will receive written notification of any changes.
To apply to pay by direct debit, complete the Housing Rent Debit form (PDF) and send to:
Payments can be made online with a debit or credit card. You will need your ten digit tenancy number.
Allpay app on your smartphone
Pay by telephone
Payments can be made using our 24 hour automated telephone line by calling 0345 200 1173. Make sure you have your tenancy number and debit card number available.
Calls cost no more than calls to geographic numbers (01 or 02). Calls from landlines are typically charged up to 9p per minute, calls from mobiles typically cost between 3p and 40p per minute depending on your network provider. Calls from landlines and mobiles are included in free call packages.
Post Office and PayPoint
You can pay your rent at any Post Office or shop that displays a PayPoint sign throughout the country. Find your nearest Pay Point store.
You will need to show your plastic rent card. You should allow two or three working days for the payment to reach us. Payments made on a Thursday or Friday at the Post Office may not reach your rent account until the following week. This may result in your rent account being in arrears.
Always keep the payment receipt for future reference. Post Offices cannot give you a balance on your account or advice on rent matters, you should contact the Estates Management Department, where staff will be happy to help.
Standing order and cheque
You can arrange a standing order payment by providing your bank with your ten digit tenancy number and Brentwood Borough Council's account number 01731291 and sort code 30-91-17.
Like many organisations, we prefer people to make payment by electronic methods rather than by cheque, if possible. If you don't have a bank account, credit or debit card, you can buy a postal order from your local post office.
Cheque and postal order payments should be made out to Brentwood Borough Council and sent to the Town Hall, Ingrave Road, Brentwood, Essex CM15 8AY (write on the reverse your name, address and your ten digit tenancy number).
If you don't pay your rent
If you don't get in touch with us or fail to comply with an agreed repayment plan, you will receive arrears letters and visits from your Housing Officer requesting that you clear your arrears.
Failure to do so will result in:
- terminating any garage tenancy you may have
- service of a Notice of Seeking Possession or Notice of Proceedings for Possession. This is the beginning of a legal process to recover the debt and may ultimately lead to the repossession of your home.
- starting Court proceedings for which you will be responsible for any legal costs which are approximately £380
If you then fail to keep to a Court Order, you risk losing your home through eviction.
Failure to pay your rent and subsequent possession proceedings can result in the loss of your home. The Council or other Registered Social Landlords generally have no obligation to re-house those evicted for non-payment of rent (even if children are involved).
For independent financial advice, contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau or a solicitor.
If the Council considers that you need further financial help, you may be awarded a Discretionary Housing Payment. For details, visit Other Help Available.
Finding the balance of your account
A statement showing rent and charges, less any entitlement to benefits and payments you have made, will be sent to you in May. if there are any discrepancies, contact the Estates Management department.
If you would like to speak with a member of staff regarding your rent account, call 01277 312500 and select the following options:
- Option 2- Council Services
- Option 2- Housing
- Option 3- Housing Rent
Rent for 2023-2024
In line with the Ministry of Housing’s guidance on rent for social housing, it was announced that rents within the social housing sector will increase for 2023/24. Usually, rents are increased by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) plus 1%, however due to CPI being so high in September 2022, the government conducted a consultation and it was agreed rents will be capped. This will mean that both rent and service charges will increase by only 7% for both General Needs and Sheltered Housing.
These changes will be taking effect on the week commencing 3 April 2023 and will remain the same until the week ending 31 March 2024.
If you pay a service charge you will have noticed that we have provided separate costing for each element of your service charge, such as caretaking, electricity etc.. This is to provide transparency to our residents, showing exactly what you are being charged for each item. The Government allows us to increase each element by no more than 3.8% each year, and there may even be a reduction in some costs if you have been overcharged on the previous year.
You should now have received your individual letters advising of these changes. If this is not the case, please contact us on 01277 312500.
You can view the agenda and minutes of any of the committee meetings via the website.
Former tenant arrears
If you leave your Tenancy and there is a debt, you're still liable to pay the outstanding amount. Debts can happen in a number of ways, but the main ones include:
- existing arrears from before the end of the Tenancy
- handing in keys after 12 noon on the Monday ,which will incur an additional weeks rent charge
- court costs
- removal costs
- overpayment of Housing Benefit being reclaimed by Revenues and Benefits
The Council work with a third partner agency to collect all former tenant arrears called Debt Collection Services (DCS). Upon a tenancy ending, if there are outstanding arrears, the case is referred to them and they will write to the Tenant asking for payment either in full or by payment arrangement. All processes are agreed by Brentwood Borough Council and DCS act on the Council’s behalf. If legal action is required, this will generally be handled directly by Brentwood Borough Council.