There are many ways in which a person or their family can become homeless, often through no fault of their own. In Dudley, our aim is to prevent homelessness whenever possible, and to offer a range of housing options to people who are homeless or have other urgent housing needs.
If you are worried about losing your home or if you need to find alternative accommodation the information and links will provide you with some general advice and also includes information that is specific to the Dudley Borough.
Please click on a link below to jump to the section that relates to your situation within these pages, or see our related documents to the right for further information.
Whether you own your home, rent it, or even if you are living with family or friends, if you have lost your home, or are worried about losing your home, the Homelessness Prevention and Response Team at Dudley Council can offer assistance to help you to resolve your housing problems.
You can contact us for advice during normal office hours 9am – 5pm, by calling 0300 555 2345. Your enquiry will be passed to an advisor and you can expect to be contacted within 3 working days or, in an emergency, directed to our duty desk for same day help.
ALWAYS TRY AND OBTAIN ADVICE AS SOON AS YOU CAN, DON’T LEAVE IT UNTIL IT IS TOO LATE. PLEASE DO NOT GIVE UP YOUR EXISTING ACCOMMODATION BEFORE SEEKING ADVICE UNLESS IT IS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY.
Should you find yourself without housing or accommodation outside of office hours, including over weekends, you can call our emergency housing team on 0300 555 2345 for advice. They will direct you to the most appropriate help in your circumstances.
Alternatively you can call Shelters Helpline on 0808 800 4444, open 365 days a year, 8am -8pm weekdays, and 8am -5pm at weekends, for help and advice.
Other sources of help:
As a homeowner you cannot be evicted from your home unless your mortgage lender takes court action and obtains a possession order and a warrant for your eviction; and even then, providing you have not been actually evicted and the locks changed, it may not be too late to get help. If you are evicted from your home it will be too late to get help- so don’t wait and don’t ignore the problem- seek help. If your lender has taken court action against you then it is vital that you get advice quickly. No matter how bad it may seem, if you get help you may be able to stay in your home. It is up to the Court to decide whether you can stay in your home, so even if you have tried but failed to reach an agreement with your lender, or if you have broken arrangements previously agreed, you should still seek independent advice before deciding to give up your home.
The following web pages and sites provide information for homeowners;
Mortgage arrears advice locally
If you are behind with mortgage payments, or if your circumstances have changed and you know that this might mean you will be unable to keep up with payments, don’t wait, get advice.
Free mortgage arrears advice is on offer to homeowners in the Dudley borough who fear they may lose their home or are worried about mounting debts.
The advice, which is available to anyone who lives in the borough, is the result of a service developed by the Dudley Council’s Homelessness Prevention and Response Team and the Dudley District Citizens’ Advice Bureau. It is aimed at anyone who is having difficulty keeping up their monthly mortgage payments. You do not have to already be behind with payments in order to use the service- if you are worried please get in touch.
Anyone who wants to use this free, confidential service should telephone 01384 816499 or visit their local Citizens’ Advice Bureau. Or alternatively contact the Homelessness Prevention and Response Team at Dudley MBC, on 0300 555 2345 All discussions are strictly confidential.
Nationally, there is a free, impartial advice service available to homeowners by calling the National Debt line on 0808 808 4000.
Or see the fact sheet Are you worried about your mortgage?
Help at County Court
All County Courts in England operate a Help at Court Scheme. Free advice is available to homeowners and to tenants in difficulty and is provided by either a local solicitor or advice agency. In Dudley, the Help at Court Scheme is operated by Wolverhampton Citizens Advice Bureau. You can contact them on 10902 572222 or alternatively please contact the Homelessness Prevention and Response Team, at Dudley MBC, on 0300 555 2345 if you are worried about losing your home and are facing court action.
The rights of tenants can be complicated and will depend on individual circumstances, but if you are renting your home from a private landlord, and do not share any part of the accommodation with them, and you began renting after 28th February 1997, it is likely that you have an assured shorthold tenancy. This is the most common form of tenancy to have if you rent from a private landlord. Most private landlords will be happy to continue to allow you to rent their property providing you adhere to the tenancy conditions. However, sometimes things don’t work out and the landlord may ask you to leave, but even if you are behind with your rent, your landlord can not evict you from your home unless they have served you with a valid notice that they require the property back, and have taken court action, obtained a possession order, and warrant of eviction. So if your landlord asks you to leave your home- get advice.
Depending upon the reasons for the landlord’s action, if you get advice, you may be able to keep your home. In some circumstances, e.g. if the landlord has not complied with rules in regard to the protection of tenancy deposits, has served notice using the wrong forms, or has not completed repairs that he has been ordered to carry out, the notice you have been given may be invalid.
Always get advice if you have been asked to leave your home.
If you have paid a deposit, and if it has not been protected in an authorised scheme, then your landlord may not be able to take action against you until your deposit is returned. You can check whether your deposit has been protected by using Shelters deposit checker Shelter - deposit checker.
Remember- only the Court’s bailiff’s can evict you, so if your landlord has evicted you from your home without a court order you may have been illegally evicted; please click the following link to contact our private rented sector team Contact Private Sector Housing or see the factsheets at the NHAS website.
More information about private renting, notices and deposits, can be found by clicking the links below and visiting the factsheets page of the NHAS website.
If you rent your home from Dudley Council and find that the Council has begun action to take back your home then you should contact your rent arrears officer to discuss any problems you may have immediately. You should also contact the Homelessness Prevention Team for help and advice. Please don’t leave it too late. Dudley Council will work with you to try to keep you in your home wherever possible.
Before the Council can evict you from your home a court order must be obtained and a procedure must be followed, called the Rent Arrears Protocol By clicking onto this link you can read about the process Dudley Council should follow if taking action against you.
If you are in arrears with your rent then contact the Income team directly on 01384 811689
There are many ways to pay your rent, please click the following link for more information:
:: Make a payment
If you are aged16-24 and worried about losing your home advice is available at the Project First Step Youth Hub. There are advisors from the Homeless Prevention and Response Team that will give advice about housing and homelessness, advisers from Connexxions on hand to advise about education, employment and training, and there is a team of support staff that can support you, offer advice, and who can help with things like benefits and money issues. All services are available on a drop in basis.
Other useful information for young people can be found at:
Project First Step
If you are aged 25 and under and looking for advice, Project First Step is full of information about getting and remaining in your first home.
By Telephone - 0300 555 2345.
In person - visit Dudley Council Plus, 259 Castle Street, Dudley DY1 1LQ
Opening hours Monday to Friday 8.00am - 5.30pm -Saturday 9.00am – 12.00 noon
In writing - please write to Homelessness Prevention Team, Dudley Council Plus, 259 Castle Street, Dudley, DY1 1LQ
Other useful information about housing and homelessness can be found at: