Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • Mrsmch349
    • By Mrsmch349 30th Mar 18, 12:26 PM
    • 30Posts
    • 25Thanks
    Mrsmch349
    Grant or loan?
    • #1
    • 30th Mar 18, 12:26 PM
    Grant or loan? 30th Mar 18 at 12:26 PM
    Hi folks

    My mother was given an Improvement Grant (of £4300) for a stairlift. The house she lived in was mine & my husband’s - long story but we were forced into taking out a second mortgage as my brother took his half of the inheritance whilst my mum was still alive (she’d put it in trust for us).

    As my mother’s health deteriorated she had to get a stairlift. She got a grant. My mum died before Xmas and the house is going through conveyancing at the moment. I phoned the council to ask if they wanted the stairlift back, but they declined. However, the guy said that we had to repay the £4300! Is this right? I thought a grant was a gift, not a loan. We’ve saved the council a fortune by providing my mother with a home, and by caring for her ourselves! We had to take an interest only loan, and spent a fortune doing up the house in the first place - so we’re not making anything on the sale.

    Talk about kick you when you’re down!

    Any insight would be appreciated.

    Thanks
Page 1
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 30th Mar 18, 1:31 PM
    • 11,823 Posts
    • 13,687 Thanks
    pmlindyloo
    • #2
    • 30th Mar 18, 1:31 PM
    • #2
    • 30th Mar 18, 1:31 PM
    Was this a disabled facilities grant?

    According to everything I have read if you sell the house within 10 years then you may have to repay some of the grant. However, it appears that grants below £5000 do not have to be repaid.

    Read this:

    https://www.luton.gov.uk/Health_and_social_care/Lists/LutonDocuments/PDF/Leaflets%20on%20Line/Paying%20back%20a%20disabled%20facilities%20grant. pdf

    I don't know whether this is a national thing or whether individual councils can use different regs.

    Have your tried googling 'paying back disabled facilities grant + name of your council'?

    Could be the person you spoke to gave you the wrong information. Google and then try telephoning again.
    • Mrsmch349
    • By Mrsmch349 30th Mar 18, 1:35 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Mrsmch349
    • #3
    • 30th Mar 18, 1:35 PM
    • #3
    • 30th Mar 18, 1:35 PM
    Hi, thanks for the response.

    Yes, it was a disabled facilities grant.

    I did Google it for my council but there was nothing about repaying.

    She got the stairlift 6yrs ago so we are within the 10yrs. So galling after all the money we will have saved them!
    Last edited by Mrsmch349; 30-03-2018 at 1:56 PM.
    • 50Twuncle
    • By 50Twuncle 30th Mar 18, 2:25 PM
    • 8,564 Posts
    • 2,024 Thanks
    50Twuncle
    • #4
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:25 PM
    • #4
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:25 PM
    National ruling - so covers you....

    When might I have to pay back the money?
    If your grant was over £5,000 we can reclaim money up to a maximum of £10,000. This only applies if
    your house is sold within 10 years of the work having been finished. If you sell it after that date you
    usually wont have to pay anything back.
    Each case will be unique but the following broad guidelines should help;
    1. Disabled Facilities Grant below £5,000
    You wont have to pay anything back. Most adaptations will be below this value.
    Last edited by 50Twuncle; 30-03-2018 at 2:27 PM.
    • Mrsmch349
    • By Mrsmch349 30th Mar 18, 2:41 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Mrsmch349
    • #5
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:41 PM
    • #5
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:41 PM
    Really? I hope you are right! Just had a thought though ... I wonder if it is the same in Scotland?

    I have got everything crossed!

    Thank you for the info.
    • w06
    • By w06 30th Mar 18, 2:53 PM
    • 746 Posts
    • 1,057 Thanks
    w06
    • #6
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:53 PM
    • #6
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:53 PM
    Worth checking as well though, was the grant paid to you or your mother?

    If the £5k limit doesn't apply to you that might make a difference, selling a house after someone's death is different to selling it and moving elsewhere.
    • Mrsmch349
    • By Mrsmch349 30th Mar 18, 2:58 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Mrsmch349
    • #7
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:58 PM
    • #7
    • 30th Mar 18, 2:58 PM
    The grant was paid to my mother but we had to attach the grant paperwork to the deeds of the house, which is in our names, not my mother!!!8217;s.
    Last edited by Mrsmch349; 30-03-2018 at 3:08 PM.
    • posiepye
    • By posiepye 30th Mar 18, 4:35 PM
    • 19 Posts
    • 10 Thanks
    posiepye
    • #8
    • 30th Mar 18, 4:35 PM
    • #8
    • 30th Mar 18, 4:35 PM
    If the council did force someone to pay back part of a grant. Whats to stop the person selling say, the stairlift (if the council say they dont want it back) and use the money from that to go towards paying some of the grant back. So some of it not coming out of your own pocket
    • Mrsmch349
    • By Mrsmch349 30th Mar 18, 4:38 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Mrsmch349
    • #9
    • 30th Mar 18, 4:38 PM
    • #9
    • 30th Mar 18, 4:38 PM
    Have tried that, too. There is no market for the stairlift as it has a curved rail. To be honest, I!!!8217;d rather give it to someone who could use it - the most I would get is about £200.
    • mrcol1000
    • By mrcol1000 30th Mar 18, 5:05 PM
    • 4,580 Posts
    • 3,944 Thanks
    mrcol1000
    I would go over the paperwork that was signed when the grant was issued. Mine was very clear over repayment if the house was sold in a certain amount of time. Councils have a duty to protect their money. Especially now, they can't just dish it out and write it off.

    If the grant was attached to the deeds of the house then it sounds like they put a charge on the property. It will sit there until the house is put up for sale, at which point no-one will want to buy the house till the charge is removed (the money owed is paid back to the council)
    • Mrsmch349
    • By Mrsmch349 30th Mar 18, 5:08 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Mrsmch349
    That!!!8217;s what I thought. However, it!!!8217;s galling to think that they make no effort to recycle the chair, and, if we hadn!!!8217;t stepped in to buy a home for my mother then they would have had to provide accommodation for her for 10yrs, too!
    • posiepye
    • By posiepye 31st Mar 18, 12:13 AM
    • 19 Posts
    • 10 Thanks
    posiepye
    Yes I agree with you. It is shocking that they cant do something with the stairlift. Instead of just writing it off. Im sure in this day an age something could be done with it. Such a waste..
    I seem to remember when I had my grant , it was something about a certain percentage to be paid back if sold in 10 years. No charge was put on the deeds
    If I was you Mrsmch349 Id speak to a few differnet people at the council. Dont just go on the word of what one person tells you.
    • Danday
    • By Danday 31st Mar 18, 9:39 AM
    • 412 Posts
    • 69 Thanks
    Danday
    That!!!8217;s what I thought. However, it!!!8217;s galling to think that they make no effort to recycle the chair, and, if we hadn!!!8217;t stepped in to buy a home for my mother then they would have had to provide accommodation for her for 10yrs, too!
    Originally posted by Mrsmch349
    As you say logic dictates that it would have cost them more. But you are dealing with local authorities here. They don't view what it could have cost them, they simply see a way of getting money to roll back in.
    • 50Twuncle
    • By 50Twuncle 31st Mar 18, 10:20 AM
    • 8,564 Posts
    • 2,024 Thanks
    50Twuncle
    Stairlifts are designed for a specific property - they generally cannot be satisfactorily transferred between properties - they cost more to remove than have in 2nd hand value..
    • teddysmum
    • By teddysmum 1st Apr 18, 1:23 AM
    • 9,120 Posts
    • 5,436 Thanks
    teddysmum
    Could the mother not have been considered to have deprived herself of assets by letting her son have his 'inheritance ' early ?(assuming the 'inheritance' was cash. Property is not counted until residential care is required by someone not leaving a qualifying person in the house )
    • Danday
    • By Danday 1st Apr 18, 3:24 PM
    • 412 Posts
    • 69 Thanks
    Danday
    Could the mother not have been considered to have deprived herself of assets by letting her son have his 'inheritance ' early ?(assuming the 'inheritance' was cash. Property is not counted until residential care is required by someone not leaving a qualifying person in the house )
    Originally posted by teddysmum
    Mum gave away her asset - to her two children, one took the cash upfront whilst the other became the owner of the property minus a mortgage raised to fund the cash payment. Yes it could be said that she did deprive herself. But given that mum died prior to her needing care at home or in a residential setting the transfer of the asset would never be considered. It would certainly be a different story if she had have gone into care. However depending on the size of mum's estate, the inheritance paid 'early' could well be 'unwound' for Inheritance Tax purposes.
    • Mrsmch349
    • By Mrsmch349 10th Apr 18, 9:40 PM
    • 30 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Mrsmch349
    An update for you guys ...

    To clarify the inheritance issue ... my parents divorced just before my dad died. My brother & I inherited what should have been my mother!!!8217;s money had she stuck it out for a wee while longer. We gave it to my mother so she could buy a house. She then put it in trust for us so that we wouldn!!!8217;t lose it. That!!!8217;s when it hit the fan, and my brother decided he didn!!!8217;t want her to move near me, and took his half! Families, eh?

    I have tried to give away the stairlift but have had no takers so it will be taken to the dump tomorrow.

    I have spoken to the council today. If we want the charge removed from the deeds then we need to repay £4,300. However, he said that my buyer could accept the charge on the deeds (for another 4yrs) - even though the stairlift won!!!8217;t be in the house ( the council guy knew this). The conditions would be that it was her primary dwelling, not used for commercial use, and kept in a good state of repair.

    I!!!8217;ve written to my solicitor with a proposal that we offer the purchaser £2,000 off the purchase price to do this. I!!!8217;m awaiting a reply.

    Seems a complete waste of time and money but hey ho!

    Thank you for all your responses.
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

196Posts Today

1,088Users online

Martin's Twitter