Calendar monthly HB payments

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    Has anyone considered paying HB calendar monthly, or do you already offer calendar monthly payments in addition to 2 weekly and 4 weekly?

    If so, what have you found to be the advantages / disadvantages?




    The advantages is that paying calendar monthly complies with the law, in that LAs are supposed to offer payments that meet the convenience of the claimant. The disadvantage is that these claims can be very difficult to reconcile entitlement to payment to subsidy.


    [quote:8f3e7e400a=”Rocky.B”]Has anyone considered paying HB calendar monthly, or do you already offer calendar monthly payments in addition to 2 weekly and 4 weekly?

    If so, what have you found to be the advantages / disadvantages?



    We are currently adapting our system (In-house) to allow payments to match the liability.
    This will be live for the introduction of LHA


    In my humble opinion, I think this is a really important issue.
    Isn’t too much of a problem at the moment, what with the high proportion of private HB payments going direct to landlords who will be in a position to see that 13 x 4weekly payment will give them the full year’s rent.

    My concern is for the claimants with a calendar month liability, and certainly in my area this is far and away the most common period of liability.If they have to budget for making calendar month payments
    but are receiving 2 weekly or 4 weekly HB payments (as Rocky.B’s authority appears to do) then it is not really helpful, and indeed very confusing for all but very numerate claimants, to continue to exclusively pay HB/LHA in this way.

    To illustrate the point for those who haven’t got round to thinking through the difficulties, consider the following liability vs 4weekly payment table:-

    Rent Liability Date/ payment due/ 4weekly payment
    28 January £200.00 £184.61
    28 February £200.00 £184.61
    28 March £200.00 £184.61
    28 April £200.00 £184.61
    28 May £200.00 £184.61
    28 June £200.00 £184.61
    28 July £200.00 £184.61
    28 August £200.00 £184.61
    28 September £200.00 £184.61
    28 October £200.00 £184.61
    28 November £200.00 £184.61
    28 December £200.00 £184.61
    13th HB pyt £184.61
    Total £2400.00 £2399.93

    Problems with this approach

    i) Depending on when the 13th payment is made, the tenant’s bank account will either be in arrears or credit at any point in time.
    ii) If they are in credit and spend the money on something else how will they be able to make up the inevitable shortfall?
    iii)If they are in arrears will landlords be sympathetic that by the end of a twelve month cycle all payments will be up to date?
    iv) My biggest worry however is how bank standing orders or direct debits can square with such an arrangement without many tenants being hit with a standard ‘account overdrawn’ fixed penalty ( upwards of £35.00 per occurence). Unless the standing order/direct debit matches the HB payment amount and cycle, and not the landlords liability demand, these punitive excess bank charges will be commonplace.

    I would suggest that councils currently with only 2 or 4 weekly HB payment options urgently think through this issue.Also crucial to consider what general information will be available to landlords and tenants to head off such problems if calendar month payments are not an immediate option.


    I still have some concern that if an LA pays cal monthly, in arrears, the tenant would have had to find the rent ‘up front’ at the start of the month;

    Rent £200 per cal month, due in advance on the 1st of each month.

    The LA offers cal monthly payments, claimant takes this option, and is paid cal monthly, in arrear, on 1st of following month.

    Where does the tenant find the months rent payment from, until HB is paid?

    If, in the same scenario the claimant opts for payment of HB 2 weekly in arrear, the tenant would still have had to find the first months rent ‘up front’, but is being reimbursed by way of HB much quicker than waiting a further 16/17 days for the payment of HB….

    Just a thought I’m grappling with at the moment…..

    However, I know it would be the claimants choice to decide what period of payment he / she would like……


    Another question for anyone already using monthly payments.

    Do you do a monthly payment run each day, to cater for different tenancy start dates? If so, how do you decide what date to pay each individual tenant?

    And how exactly does this type of payment reconcile to subsidy, or overpayment calculation? I presume you pay the same amount each month regardless of the number of days – which surely means there are some months that you are paying slightly in advance (February in particular).


    I’m curious about this as well – say rent is £650 per month or £150 per week (nice and easy example). I would have thought that an authority offering monthly payments would have to pay according to the number of days in that month, ie
    January (31 days) HB = 150 / 7 x31 = £664.28
    February (29 days) HB = 150 / 7 x29 = £621.43

    It seems this is the only way of actually paying the HB due, rather than underpaying or overpaying each month and hoping it all adds up at the end – which it certainly will not do if the claim ends before a whole year has passed.

    If someone is entitled to £150 HB per week, how can you justify paying them £650 in a month with only has 4 weeks (eg Feb 2009)? For a worst case scenario, what happens if entitlement starts on 1 Feb and ends on 28 Feb? Would the £650 paid for that month have been properly paid or would there be a £50 overpayment?


    The Authority I work in are implementing monthly payments from next Monday.

    The monthly payment is calculated by times the weekly entitlement by 52 then dividing by 12.

    However if there is an overpayment it would be worked out on a monthly basis based on the number of days in the month.


    So certain claimants will be better off than others depending on the time of year they claim and how they chose to be paid? That hardly seems fair!

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