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Directing Rent payments From Universal Credits


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My first appearance here, being a accidental landlord! I have a AST tenant with £11000 arrears amounting to 13 months rent. Property is managed (mismanaged ) by letting agent WH Brown ( also called Sequence etc.).   It turns out tenant in receipt of housing costs from Universal Credit but agents not done anything. Furthermore agent refusing to pass on to me the national Insurance number for the tenant to enable me to do a DIY effort in this respect.  Universal Credit application requires NI number in order to fill their relevant form. What can I do? Any way I can have direct payments without NI or if no way round get agents to provide the NI. Thanks 

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Try this link for direct payments from UC  https://directpayment.universal-credit.service.gov.uk/

My understanding is If infomation is required that may be used in a court case Data protection doesnt apply. Also any info your agent collects for the purpose of managing your tenancy has been done on your behalf and acttng for you. So you could try that angle first. Or sign up to the data protection act youself (£35) https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-fee/  and show your agent your certificate then demand the info.

A question to ask would be if you had only asked for a tenant find service would they have not given you all the tenancy info once it had started.

Also with at least 6 months arrears even in the current covid situation a section 8 (grounds 8,10,11) can be served and you can apply to the courts for a hearing . Ask why they havent advised that to you yet and served a section 8 on your tenant?

Formally request their complaint proceedure and details of their regulatory body. That can sometimes focus the mind of agencies because that would involve a lot of work for them.

Let us know how you get on


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Thanks Grampa. Update is that agents continue to refuse to give any information,  this even after requesting my file which I requested so that i could read and assess if there was a basis for a complaint. Anyhow complaint submitted regardless as the visible outcomes suggest a basis of negligence. I guess matter will move to Ombudsman referral and legal action but lets live in hope! On the plus side have found out  that one can contact Universal Credit without a  National Insurance number which I have done. sincere thanks due to you for your reply which gave a beginner like me a good start.

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If the agent belongs to a regulated body (it will be on their website)  such as Arla, Safeagent or UKLA you can also make a complaint to them.

Also you have the option of a formal request for information under Data Protection Act 2018 which really (i think) just applies to infomation relating to yourself however you could try your luck and request for all information relating to you and your tenancy. Point out that the above act requires them to respond to a request for data within one calendar month. If not received an additional complaint will be made to the Commissioners office. You also have the right to request it in paper form which I do if I have to do this just because it causes a lot more work.

Make sure all corespondance is done in writing/email as it makes your case stronger if they are not replied to, evasive, or not promtly.

You also can leave a low star review on their, facebook, google, yell, allagents review sites which they will hate but make sure whatever you write is factually correct. 



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