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The Chartered Institute of Housing is the independent voice for housing and the home of professional standards

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    Direct payments demonstration projects learning network


    As part of the government's welfare reforms, direct payments will be introduced for households moving onto universal credit from October 2013. This means that the new credit will be paid as a single payment direct to the claimant, rather than to the landlord as housing benefit is currently.

    The department for work and pensions (DWP) are currently running a number of direct payment demonstration projects with local authorities and housing providers to see how tenants manage their monthly payment of housing benefit and to seek to address any problems in communication that may arise. As part of this process CIH, together with DWP and the department for communities and local government (DCLG), is facilitating an online learning network to enable organisations to keep track of the demonstration projects, to share in their learning and to exchange information and views about implementing direct payments with other interested parties.

    About the learning network

    The network will enable you to keep up to date with the lessons learnt by the demonstration projects. Regular learning reports are posted in the network's document library.

    A discussion forum allows everyone to keep in touch with each other, to exchange experiences and ideas and find solutions to problems and webinars are also used to allow participants to hear from and speak directly to those involved in the demonstration projects online. Previous webinars have covered areas such as:

    • An overview of the demonstration projects
    • A view from a participating area
    • Emerging lessons
    • Providing support to tenants
    By joining the network you can also view recordings of past webinars and access copies of the slides and the speakers' answers to participants questions.

    How to access/join the network

    Please contact Niki Walton to request an invitation to join the direct payments demonstration projects learning network or access it now if you are already a member.

    Welfare reform: practical approaches

    This PDF guide for CIH members provides practical advice, checklists and suggestions to help housing organisations to both prepare for the changes ahead and to protect their businesses.

    Great new member benefits

    We have some great new products just for CIH members, webinars on the latest hot topics in housing, What you need to know factsheets that provide key information to help keep you up to date on the latest developments in housing and Focus on influencing that tells you more about our work to influence the housing agenda.