Thursday, 6 August 2009

Cardboard box beckons???

Not a great day really.
Went to the Housing department at the local council because the tax credit people have over the past four months slowly reduced the tax credits I receive by £70 per month. Seems every 6 weeks or so they send me another document telling me how actually I won't be receiving x anymore and it's been reduced to such and such. Anyway, I thought this reduction would mean I would qualify for more Housing Allowance - nope, turns out I already get the maximum amount they allow for a 2 bed house. It was all I could do not to burst into tears.
So I have another appointment with Housing tomorrow to see if I can qualify for the discretionary extra payments for Housing, which, if I qualify, will fingers crossed, mean I can make the rent this month (it's actually two months because two direct debits came off and I simply didn't have the money for one and the other I thought didn't come off until Aug... this means I am incurring £70 in charges from the bank for paying these items, and a further £28 for going over my overdraft - spoken to the bank explained the situation, their only advice was to move my money into another account and just wrack up a ton of bank charges or take out a loan with them.. except I won't qualify for a loan even if I did want to go down that dangerous and slippery slope - and the consequence of those direct debits and the subsequent charges is I didn't have rent available at the end of July. Landlady has agreed I can make both payments on the 30th Aug - if I don't then she will terminate the tenancy)

Beginning to wonder if I should ask the council for their cardboard box strategy (Yes, I kid you not, they do have one).

And I know it's not really a factor, but the weather isn't helping, its so hot down here; literally too hot to sit out in because it feels like my skin is being burned away and the few hours we did have to be out in it that heat, left me with a rollicking headache.

As I have no idea when I may get a call from aparent enquiring about me childminding for them; my only real hope, I can realistically see, is the discretionary payments, if I get turned down, I'm pretty screwed.

Amazing how an unexpected £100 waterbill could f*** one up so much! I could give my landlady the rent today that was expected at the end of July - trouble is if I do I will then incur masses of charges for all normal monthly direct debits that are yet to come off.

Ok, I really can't think about this anymore - I'm doing all I can to try and get something sorted, I just have to continue knowing that the gods won't let the worst happen, and something will fall into place so me and Rye have a home still come September.


Jax said...

oh dear. Hugs. And best wishes that the cosmic supply company comes through for you.

Joxy said...

Cheers Jax :-)

Common sense says the council helping me out with an extra payment this month will ultimately mean I'll be off the benefits and possibly even HA far far sooner than if I loose this place.. if that happens gawds know when I'll be able to start childminding.

I simply cannot wait to be working and bieng able to build up a bit of savings instead of living to hand and mouth each month.

Liz said...

That's awful - why have they been cutting your tax credits? Are you sure they're supposed to be cutting it? I mean, you're getting less income than you were (ie none!), so surely if anything your child tax credit should be going up?
I hope everything sorts itself out soon.

Joxy said...

I don't know, at first I got a letter saying they would pay me x but it would mean I'd be left with an overpayment that I'd have to pay back later. Then a few weeks later I got another telling me I would be receiving less and they'd overpaid me by £90 odd quid and were reducing payments a little for that. I've since had another letter which has reduced the amounts again - but there's never any explanation as to why an trying to get sense out of the folks on the telephone is near impossible and I'm wary of calling them because when I went part-time a couple years ago and it wasw a nightmare - they said I owed them initially £600, then it was over a grand, then four grand.. until finally they listened and it got sorted - but gawd it was a stressful time. So I'm scared if I call and ask what the hell is going on I'll just get a letter in a few days saying I owe them even more and I'll be getting less.

Naomi said...

Oh Joxy, considering these people are meant to "help" they don't do a very good job of it do they?

We've just had tax credits trying to say we owe them £200 but we've appealed because this was definitely their mistake. You know if you notify them of changes in circumstances straight away and they continue to give you the wrong money (or too much) then it is their fault and you can appeal and probably not have to pay it back.

Anyway, really hope things work out in the end hun. xxxx

Joxy said...

Ohhh, I didn't know that Naomi,and I always do inform tax credits of any changes because I'm terrified of them saying I have to pay back a huge amount.

I'll keep that in mind for future :)