When Mrs P accepted help from Trivallis housing association’s Money Advice Team, little did she realise that they would uncover a whopping £25,000 worth of annual income for her.
Mrs P a local resident who wished to remain anonymous, was approaching state pension age. When she spoke with her Rent Account Manager, they discovered she hadn’t received the code needed to apply for her pension. This led to a referral to Sue Hoskins, Money Advice Officer at Trivallis, who was able to support Mrs P in starting her pension application.
Grateful for the help, Mrs P shared: “I had many confusing letters and was afraid to ask for help. Sue explained things in a very clear way without making me feel silly.”
After sorting out the pension application, Sue conducted a benefit check, revealing additional financial support was available for Mrs P, including state pension credit, housing benefit, council tax reduction, and help with her water bill, totalling an impressive £25,537.75 for the year.
Expressing her gratitude, Mrs P said: “I am really grateful for Sue for helping me and making a difference to my life. Not only financially but mentally, as I was struggling to know where to get help. It didn’t matter what question I had; she was able to help.
“For people like me, we often get left behind. I only have access to my landline and a small mobile phone, I don’t have any access to the internet so I’m not online. The only thing on a line is my washing! It’s great to see Trivallis supporting their tenants and reaching out to people they can see are in need of help. If you’re struggling like I was, please access that support, it really has changed my life.”
Reflecting on the positive impact she had, Sue stated: “It’s rewarding to see the difference I was able to make to Mrs P’s life. Ongoing support is crucial, and it’s a joy to stay in touch with Mrs P who remains very grateful for the support we provided.
“I will say that Mrs P is a rare case, we can’t promise to find that much money for everyone, as much as we would love to. But every little helps in the current situation so just like Mrs P did, I would encourage everyone to access the support that is available. You have nothing to lose by doing so, but perhaps a lot to gain both financially and emotionally.”
In November, Community Housing Cymru published its ‘Ends Won’t Meet’ cost of living report that outlines the growing demand for money advice services delivered by housing associations across Wales. It also highlighted the physical, social and mental impacts that these financial pressures are having on those communities that have been most affected by the cost of living.
If you are a Trivallis tenant in needs of financial advice, you can get in touch with the Money Advice Team on 01443 494560.