Housing tenancy during coronavirus

Your tenancy

Scotland is transitioning through the Scottish Government’s COVID-19 restrictions. This continues to have a significant impact on the delivery of Housing services.

All Housing Officers will be unable to undertake home visits unless for emergency requirements until advised it is safe to do so, but will remain on hand to assist you by telephone. The team can be contacted to discuss any issues with your tenancy and provide you with information and assistance if you have any difficulties as a result of the COVID-19.

The Tenancy Services team are on hand to assist you and can be contacted by telephone:

Community Safety Wardens operating in Fraserburgh and Peterhead will be continuing with patrols.

Your rent

If you are able to pay rent as normal you must continue to do so. If you are unable to pay the full amount, you should contact your housing officer to discuss this and allow them to assist you during this period.

It is likely during this time that many tenants who are experiencing financial difficulties as a result of Coronavirus will be eligible for some financial support. Our housing officers can assist you to make a claim for Universal Credit, Discretionary Housing Payment, Council Tax Reduction or get help through the Scottish Welfare Fund. We will also direct you to other agencies that may be able to assist you.

The Scottish Government made changes to legislation to ensure no eviction action is taken within 6 months of a Notice of Proceedings being served for notices served after 7th April 2020. For anyone who had previously been served with a Notice of Proceedings or where court action is ongoing, we will take account of the impact of the current crisis on individual tenants and will continue to support tenants to maintain their tenancies. It therefore remains very important that if you are unable to make payment that you contact your housing officer to make a suitable payment arrangement or to obtain advice and assistance to ensure that you can make payments to your rent.

Each tenant who faces rent arrears will be treated on an individual basis and if we contact you by letter, telephone, email or text, we ask you to contact us urgently to allow us to help you through this period:

Tenant participation

Face-to-face meetings with tenants for the purposes of tenant participation activities will be held in line with COVID-19 advice and guidance. We have embraced the digital methods available and been encouraged by the willingness of tenants to work with us using Microsoft Teams. We look forward to meeting tenants in their communities as soon as the government guidance allows for this activity. Through the summer as restrictions lift, the tenant participation team plan to hold outdoor meet and greet sessions in local communities. There will be advance publication via Aberdeenshire Council’s corporate communications channels telling tenants where we will be and when we will be there.

While we are looking forward to meeting tenants in their communities, the Tenant Participation will continue to use digital means to stay in contact with tenant volunteers. We are conscious that some tenants either do not have access to online computer facilities or are not comfortable communicating using IT and we are trying to ensure we keep contact with them. It is likely that even with the easing of lockdown restrictions it may be some time before we are able to hold larger face-to-face meetings, but we will keep tenants up to date on developments.

The Tenants Facebook page is now live and open to interested tenants. We now have members consisting of reps from Registered Tenant groups, a local Councillor and tenants from the north, south and central of Aberdeenshire.

If you wish to get involved with any of these online meetings please contact our Tenant Participation Officers at claire.hancox@aberdeenshire.gov.uk, 01467 537456 (covering Central and South Aberdeenshire) or jill.harmer@aberdeenshire.gov.uk, 01467 537413 (covering North Aberdeenshire).

Your area

Aberdeenshire Community Planning Partnership has produced an interactive map detailing local area information on coronavirus, news, and events.