Moving On – ENG

Renting might be very different here in the United Kingdom. To help you settle into your home we have provided some advice and information on what you need to do and who to contact. 

Paying your rent

Your landlord will have provided you with a tenancy agreement. This document will explain how much rent to pay and how often. If you are on a low income and cannot afford to pay all of the rent yourself, you may be entitled to certain benefits to help with this.

Claiming benefit towards your rent

There are two different types of benefit you can claim towards your rent. What benefit you need to claim is dependent on who your landlord is. How much benefit you are entitled to is dependent a number of things including (but not limited to) your:

  • Bedroom need
  • Income
  • Tenancy type

If you are a Shire Homes tenant, you need to claim Housing Benefit. You can do this online using the link below:

If your Landlord is not Shire Homes (such as a Housing Association or this Council) then you need to claim Universal Credit. If you do not have a Universal Credit claim use the link below:

If your landlord is South Cambridgeshire District Council then you are a Council Tenant. If you landlord is a registered provider on this list, then you are a Housing Association Tenant:

Registered Providers in South Cambridgeshire – South Cambs District Council (

 If you live outside South Cambridgeshire, you can check Housing providers here:

 If your landlord is none of the above, it is likely you are a Private Tenant. If you are unsure what kind of landlord you rent from, you should ask your Landlord to clarify. Universal Credit will usually ask you to provide a copy of your tenancy agreement to check who the Landlord is.

If you already have a Universal Claim you need to report your change of address/new rent liability as a ‘change of circumstances’. This can be done through your online Universal Credit account:

It is very important that you keep your benefit claim up to date. It is your responsibility to do this. If you have a change of circumstances such as a change of income, someone moves in or out, your rent changes, etc – you should make either Universal Credit/Housing Benefit aware as soon as possible. You may be overpaid or underpaid if you do not do this. Information on reporting changes of circumstances is in the links below:

Council Tax

Council Tax is an annual fee your local council charges you for the services it provides, like rubbish collection and libraries. As you are now a tenant, you are liable for Council Tax. You should report this to Council Tax if you have not already done so using the link below:

When registering for Council Tax, you should make them aware that you are a Ukrainian Refugee so they can apply a discount to your bill.

If you are on a low income you may be entitled to Council Tax Reduction. This is an award that will reduce your Council Tax bill and is dependent on your income and circumstances. To make a Council Tax Reduction claim use the link below:

If you are a Shire Homes Tenant, you will use the same form to claim both Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction.

Setting up bills

Your Landlord should tell you who supplies electricity and gas (where there are any gas appliances) at the property. Find and take a reading of the energy meter(s). The Landlord can tell you where these are located and how to take a reading.  

The website below also explains how to take a meter reading:

If you do not know who your electrical supplier is you can use the link below to find out:

If you do not know who your gas supplier is, you can use the link below to find out:

Once you find out who your energy supplier is contact them and tell them what your energy meter reading was. That way they will issue the correct bill from when the meter reading was taken. How you pay your energy bill will be dependent on the provider. Each provider will have different ways you can do this but most will allow you to pay online, set up a standing order or direct debit.

Ofgem are the energy regulator for Great Britain. The website below contains guidance on managing home gas and energy supply:

Most energy customers are currently being charged on a standard variable tariff (SVT) and pay at a level set by the price cap for each kilowatt hour (kWh) they use.

However, prices have recently fallen and some suppliers are now beginning to offer fixed rate energy tariffs. These allow you to lock your energy price per kWh for a specified period of time. If you want to consider changing your energy supplier, the website below gives you information on how to do so:

Water supplier

Your landlord should inform you of who your water supplier is and how this should be paid. If you are living in a flat, your water charge may have been included in your service charge and this will be explained in your tenancy agreement. In South Cambridgeshire your water is billed by Cambridge Water.

Once you move into the property take a water reading and contact Cambridge Water to telling them that you are a new customer:

Once you have done this they will provide you with a Customer Reference Number you can use to set up an online account to manage your bills and payments:

Finding an internet provider

When you move into a property it will not have internet. You will need to arrange an internet provider yourself. Different internet providers will operate in different parts of South Cambridgeshire. Who provides your property with internet is your choice. We suggest that you compare internet providers as some may offer better deals than others. Below are some websites you can use to help you find the internet provider which is best for you. This list is not exhaustive, and you will find other websites online yourself:

Bin collection

Each bin is collected fortnightly on alternate weeks i.e. the black bin is collected one week, the blue and green bin are collected the following week. Green bins are collected monthly from December to March. To find out what day your bins are collected on, use the link below:

Looking after the property

If you are encounter any problems with the property itself such as disrepair or things not working as they should, you should report these to the landlord. When you move into the property your landlord should give you some information on the best way to contact them if these kinds of issues ever happen.

It is the Landlords responsibility to maintain the structure and exterior of

the property. They must ensure the property is free from serious

hazards throughout your tenancy and deal with any problems with the water,

electricity and gas supply. Most repairs will need to be carried out by them.

Get your landlord’s permission before attempting repairs or decorating yourself. Not doing so may breach your tenancy. What kind of decorating is allowed at a property will vary from landlord to landlord.

The landlord must arrange an annual gas safety check by a Gas Safe engineer (where there are any gas appliances) and arrange an electrical safety check by a qualified and competent person every five years.

To carry out repairs or any safety checks, the landlord must seek your permission to access your home and give at least 24 hours’ notice of proposed visits for things like repairs. Those visits should take place at reasonable times – neither the landlord nor the letting agent is entitled to enter your home without your express permission.

Make sure you know how to operate the boiler and other appliances and know where the stopcock, fuse box and any meters are located. If you do not know how to do this your Landlord should tell you how.

Consider obtaining insurance for your contents and belongings. The landlord will usually have insurance for the property, but it will not cover anything that belongs to you.

Be considerate of the neighbours. Don’t take in a lodger or sub-let the property as this will likely be a breach of your tenancy.

Smoking and pets

Your tenancy should explain the rules regarding smoking and pets. If you want to have a pet in your home in the future, discuss this with your landlord first as you may need their permission first. Different properties and Landlords will have different rules when it comes to pets.

Updating your address

You should make your bank, employer, or any service you use that holds your address details aware of your new address. This will prevent your previous host or accommodation provider from receiving any ‘unwanted mail’.


At present the United Kingdom is going through a ‘cost of living crisis’. If you find budgeting difficult, there are  Income Advisors at South Cambridgeshire District Council. They can discuss with you your income and expenditure and help you understand how to best spend your money. If you are not claiming any benefits, you may be entitled to (such as Council Tax Reduction) they will advise you of this.

Homes for Ukraine Scheme

Should you ever need information or advice in the future you can still contact Homes for Ukraine team at your council.

The best way to contact South Cambridgeshire Council is via email at