Although Bron Afon and allpay have been working together since 2009, a problem presented itself when tenants started receiving their housing benefits directly.
According to Ryan Dorrian, direct payments co-ordinator at the organisation, the money would be left in their accounts for too long, causing them to miscalculate how much money they had to spare and ultimately leaving them unable to pay for their housing.
While setting up an automatic direct debit to help prevent the problem from occurring was an option, Bron Afon was only able to offer this for rent and water services on just five dates during a one-month period.
“What we were finding is that tenants could receive their housing benefit at the start of the month and the director debit wasn’t coming out until the end of the month,” claimed Dorrian.
“In that time it could be used to pay other bills, so we looked at trialling allpay direct debits and it’s only recently where we’ve got the system up and running and ready to use,” he added.
As the two organisations had already worked together, choosing allpay direct debit seemed to be the most natural option to improve the situation.
The payments firm was able to offer Bron Afon a solution that met a variety of needs, such as flexibility and multiple choices.
“We can now set up four weekly direct debits for tenants and as soon as they receive their housing benefit, we can collect the rent as soon as possible giving us and the resident the assurance that the rent is paid,” claimed Dorrian.
“Our previous service was also quite dated. We had to send out forms and wait for our residents to send them back.
“However, because we can now set them up paperlessly and over the phone with allpay, it can happen straight away,” he added.
By working will allpay, Bron Afon has been able to offer its tenants many more locations to pay for services, as well as much more flexibility on when they pay their bills.
“Before we moved to allpay we had about three or four area offices and two main points in the town where people could pay so we only had six places where people could pay,” Dorrian claimed.
“Over time, we’ve been able to build up allpay services, including most recently the direct debits.
“I can’t think of another organisation out there that offers such a wide range of products. I’ve been involved in the implementation and anything we’ve needed, allpay has been great,” he added.
Dorrian also welcomes how future-proof allpay’s systems will be, claiming the flexibility will work well with Universal Credit.
“With Universal Credit coming in, the advantages of allpay’s any date of the month/any frequency ability, I can see us making the case to use the services for all of our tenants, because under Universal Credit, claimants could be paid on any date of the month,” he claimed.