Orbit’s Advice Services team has supported over 1,600 individual households over the last year with support from budgeting to managing debts, meaning customers are now £3.8m better off.
Alongside building new homes and managing those it owns, Orbit offers a wide range of services to support customers, including money advice, support getting back into employment, energy advice and help getting online.
Over the past year, Orbit has seen an increase in demand on these services.
With almost 500,000 people nationally being affected by welfare changes and increasing levels of debt, the demand for additional support has never been greater.
Lee Steele, head of income services, said: “We are continuing to work in a challenging environment, with around 2,500 Orbit customers facing reductions in their benefits because of the bedroom tax, and a further 300 having their benefit capped. Our staff have worked tirelessly with customers to safeguard their homes despite these changes.”
“This is a tremendous achievement. On average customers who engage with our support services are over £2000 better off as a result.
“As well as the monetary gain, there is a real hidden wellbeing achievement and social value to the work that our teams undertake. The burden of debt can cause real anxiety for our customers and their families. I would urge any customer who is in need of help not to suffer in silence and talk to us for free and confidential advice.”
In addition to the gains for customers, Orbit has also had a successful year in terms of rent collection, with arrears levels down by around £50k.
For more information on the work of Orbit’s Advice Services Team, click here