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When everyone has a home

028 9024 5640: Housing & Debt Helpline for Northern Ireland

October 2015

The main elements of the Consumer Rights Act 2015 (the Act) came into force on 1st October 2015. The Act aims to make the laws on consumer protection clearer and easier to understand, saving consumers and businesses time and money.

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Regulation, Private Tenancies, Landlord, Legal

The latest Northern Ireland Housing Bulletin shows that there has been a decrease of 5% on the number presenting as homeless to the Housing Executive compared to last quarter.

The Bulletin, which covers the period of April to June 2015 also shows a decrease of  13%  in the number of households accepted as full duty applicants compared to the previous quarter.

Key facts from the NI Housing Bulletin include

Domestic violence accounts for approximately one-fifth of all recorded violent crime in Northern Ireland. Whatever form it takes, domestic violence and abuse is rarely a one off incident, it is a pattern of abusive and controlling behaviour which tends to escalate over time. It often continues after the couple have separated. The following statistics show the serious extent of the problem in Northern Ireland. 

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Practical tips, Legal

More than 20% of Northern Ireland households now live in private rented accommodation, according to the Northern Ireland Family Resources Survey.  Ten years ago, this figure stood at 10%.

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Research, Private Tenancies, Landlord

Director of Housing Rights, Janet Hunter  won the Exemplary Housing Professional award at the Women in Housing Awards in Manchester, on the 22 October 2015. 

Janet’s passion for housing, and her belief in the ability of housing to transform lives, has grown with her years in the business.  Janet has been the Director of Housing Rights since 1994, leading a highly motivated team offering a range of practical services to those in greatest housing need in Northern Ireland.

The impact on child health as a result of fuel poverty was the subject of a recent seminar held in Belfast. Housing Rights is well used to dealing with enquiries about problems with heating systems, lack of sufficient heating and financial issues relating to the cost of heating a home. In many cases this can have a knock-on effect on the condition of the home such as dampness and condensation. But, an impact that is often hidden is the effect a cold home can have on children.

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Fitness, Money Matters, Affordability

Universal credit driving vulnerable people to loan sharks…

National Trading Standards published the ‘Consumer Harm Report’ in October.  The report highlights a worrying link between Universal credit and an increased use of loan sharks

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Money Matters, Regulation

Saturday 10th October is World Homeless Day.  Homelessness affects many people in Northern Ireland, including people who are no longer able to live in homes they own due to money problems.

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Repossession, Homelessness, Affordability

A Hate Harassment Toolkit offering guidance and practical information to improve support for people experiencing hate harassment, has been launched by the Housing Executive.

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Practical tips, Equality

Paddy Gray Professor of Housing, Ulster University will be chairing Housing Rights upcoming conference Fit for the Future? Private Renting Conference 2015. Below, Paddy outlines why now, more than ever, change is needed in the private rented sector.

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Regulation, Private Tenancies, Policy