Homes for Ukraine: What if I can no longer afford to host a family?

Joe Biden calls Putin a 'butcher' after visiting Ukrainian refugees

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The Government’s Homes for Ukraine scheme enables UK households to become sponsors of Ukrainians fleeing the war. The scheme offers sponsors with suitable accommodation a £350 tax-free payment every month to host a refugee.

One of the key expectations of the sponsorship is that you’re able to provide at least six months of stable accommodation.

Accommodation can be anything from a spare and empty room in your house, to an unoccupied home – as long as it’s safe, secure, and provides guests adequate access to kitchen and bathroom facilities.

You should not be charging rent to those you sponsor, as the optional £350 ‘thank you’ payment from the Government will go towards this, although it is understood that there could be additional costs associated with helping out that the £350 won’t cover.

If you misjudged your financial ability to help, or for any other reason you have to end the sponsorship arrangement prematurely, you are able to do so.

Read more: How ‘ordinary folk’ can help Ukrainians to settle in Britain

How to end the sponsorship

To end the sponsorship, you should give your guests a reasonable amount of notice beforehand.

Next, you need to inform your local council as soon as possible so they’re aware and don’t keep paying you the £350.

If your guests have the money, they could be able to afford to move on into rented housing.

If rented housing isn’t an option and they have no place else to go, they can apply for help as homeless. Ukrainian refugees will be given the same right to apply as British citizens.

When the sponsorship ends, guests will also have access to public funds to rent a property like other British citizens. They will be able to claim the housing part of Universal Credit or Housing Benefit.

To find out more information about how to rent in the UK, the Government provides a useful guide here.

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