Housing benefit, or Universal Credit, payments may be made by a local authority to assist the tenant with their rent costs, depending on the individual's personal financial circumstances.
A tenancy may be set up to expect rent payments from benefit, and the benefit payment itself is then received from the local authority to the agency's bank account, from where it is allocated to the tenancy. This payment may include benefit contributions for various tenancies, so it will be accompanied by a schedule outlining the breakdown. It is typically received by post on or around the payment date.
If the benefit payment is made directly to the tenant and the tenant then pays the rent, this should just be treated as tenant rent, and recorded as a normal tenant receipt.
- Got to the housing benefits area via the Accounting > Housing Benefits menu. This will show a filterable list of benefit payments received to date.
- Click Record Benefit.
- Specify the date the money was received into the agency bank account, and the amount received.
- Select the local authority from whom the payment has been received.
- If no local authority has been defined on your agency yet, you can add a new one via a pop-up window by clicking Add New Authority. Alternatively you can add full local authority details via Settings > Agency Settings > Local Authorities (in the Contacts and Providers section).
- Specify the bank account (usually the agency's client account) into which the money was received, and the method of payment (typically a bank transfer).
- Record the unique payment reference. This is used to ensure duplicate payments are not recorded in error.
- Optionally, record details of the rental period covered by this payment. If they are specified (recommended) they will appear on statements to indicate which rental periods benefit receipts relate to.
- Click Save.