Online money advice partnership to help Wheatley Group tenants budget

Wheatley Group tenants can get online help to manage their money and avoid costly pay-day loans.

The housing group already provides a range of budgeting and benefits advice services for tenants, including access to Welfare Benefits Advisors and Money Advisors.

Now it has joined forces with the Money Advice Service to create online advice and tools to help people keep on top of their finances at a time and place to suit them.

Tenants of Wheatley – which includes GHA, Cube, Loretto Housing and West Lothian Housing Partnership – can work out how much they spend each month, find affordable loan options, get advice on how to reduce their outgoings and discover the true cost of pay-day loans.

The partnership between the housing, care and community regeneration group and the UK’s statutory body for improving people’s money management is the first in the country.

Hazel Young, Wheatley Group director of policy and service development, said: “We want to do everything we can to prevent our tenants falling into a spiral of debt and turning to expensive pay-day loan companies.

“By working with the Money Advice Service we can provide another way for tenants to get free, expert advice to keep their finances on track.”

The new online advice will also help tenants prepare for Universal Credit – the UK government’s new single payment for people who are looking for work or on a low income.

Universal Credit has already been introduced in several areas in Scotland, including Inverness, Edinburgh, North Lanarkshire and West Dunbartonshire. Glasgow will follow in May.

Allison Barnes, Scotland manager for the Money Advice Service, said: “We are delighted to be working with Wheatley Group to ensure housing tenants in Scotland have access to the information and support they need to take control of their finances.

“We know people who plan ahead for big expenses, life events or unexpected costs are more likely to avoid experiencing financial difficulties or debt in the future. We hope that greater access to these tools and information will encourage people to be proactive about planning ahead where their money is concerned.”

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