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£6m of savings for Hanover residents in last four years

15 June 2016

Be Wise 1

Hanover Housing Association has once again exceeded its target to help residents protect and improve their incomes and save money on energy bills.

For the fourth successive year, Hanover’s Be Wise service has generated extra income for residents by providing practical assistance to help them maximise their incomes, save money with their energy bills, help with adaptations to their homes and advise on contents insurance designed for their circumstances.

Each year Hanover has set out to improve residents’ finances to the tune of at least £1 million. However, since the service began in 2012, the organisation has achieved over £6 million worth of savings through increased income and entitlements via the various Be Wise services.

The success is thanks to Hanover’s specialist Financial Rights team, energy advisers, and local housing management teams who have taken Be Wise to over 170 estates across the UK. This includes providing confidential benefit assessments, along with the opportunity to look at the various entitlements residents may be able to access.
In one case, the Financial Rights team helped a resident apply for a higher rate of Attendance Allowance which led to an increase in her housing benefit. Along with awards of Pension Credit and Council Tax benefit, her annual income increased by £7,000.

In another example, Hanover’s Energy Efficiency Adviser discovered a transposed meter in a resident’s flat which resulted in a refund of £1,600.

The service also provides free phone helplines to answer queries and give individual advice.

Sharon Moore, Financial Rights Manager for Hanover, said: 'For several years we have been seeing a gradual reduction in benefits and welfare assistance from Government agencies, meaning housing providers are under immense pressure to deliver the best and most affordable services to residents. By providing additional support in the form of Be Wise, Hanover is able to help and advise people on how best to increase their small fixed incomes in order to meet the costs of living in later years.

'To have beaten our target so comprehensively last year was fantastic and being able to continually increase the level of income for our residents is a wonderful achievement.”