The Homes for Ukraine scheme was launched on 18 March 2022 by the UK government. It enables UK individuals, charities, community groups and businesses to support Ukrainians fleeing the war by offering their spare rooms or vacant properties.
Individual ‘sponsors’ are asked to provide homes or a spare room rent-free for as long as they can, with a minimum stay of 6 months. In return, they can receive an optional £350 per month ‘thank you’ payment for up to 12 months.
Sponsors are only expected to provide accommodation. However, there is nothing stopping sponsors offering meals and other support if they want to.
Ukrainians arriving in the UK under this scheme will be granted 3 years’ leave to remain, with entitlement to work, and be able to access benefits and public services. Under the scheme they are called ‘guests’.
Over 150,000 people have already signed up to welcome someone into their home, and many of those people will have a mortgage. The Government has advised sponsors with mortgages to contact their lender. This is because hosting guests for 6 months or more is usually not allowed by the terms and conditions of a residential mortgage.
Make sure you comply with any requirements your home insurer has around hosting a guest in your property under the scheme. The Association of British Insurers has issued a helpful statement, which you can find here.
Metro Bank supports Homes for Ukraine, and we want to make it easy for our customers to be sponsors with no impact on their mortgage. We will do this by waiving our usual requirements around the letting and subletting of residential properties.
There may be some cases where we cannot support a customer who wants to be a sponsor, such as:
If we cannot support a customer’s request to be a sponsor we will explain why this is.
Please make sure you check the following before going ahead with sponsorship:
Make sure you have read all the information available about the scheme and have fully considered what is expected from if you host a guest.
You can find helpful information and resources for money management at www.moneyhelper.org.uk.
If you are already struggling, or concerned about your ability to make your mortgage payments, please call us to discuss your situation. We want to help.
We will not review your financial situation or advise you on whether joining the scheme is the right thing for you. In giving our support we assume that you have carefully considered your ability to be a sponsor under the Government scheme, and you are confident you will be able to maintain your mortgage payments.