Housing Benefit can pay for part or all of your rent. How much you get depends on your income and circumstances.
You can apply for Housing Benefit whether you’re unemployed or working and are not entitled to Universal Credit, however Housing Benefit cannot be paid for heating, hot water, energy or food.
Before making your claim you will need to have the following information
- Your postcode
- Your National Insurance number
- Details of the bank or building society account you want Housing Benefit paid into
- Your rent agreement (if you have one)
- Details of your savings or other capital
- Details of any income that’s not from work, eg from an insurance plan
- Details of any other benefits you’re getting
- Details of any children, including child benefit numbers
How to claim Housing Benefit;
- At the DWP Housing office where we have paper copies of claim forms and the facilities to make your claim online with support for either from our Housing Officer.
- Online via your local council website
- By completing a paper claim form
I have had a change in my circumstances what should I do?
If you have made a claim for Housing Benefit, or if you are already receiving Housing Benefit and your circumstances change, you need to tell your local council about the change immediately as this can affect the amount of Housing Benefit you are entitled too.
Pop along to our office and we can assist you to complete the necessary paperwork to advise Housing Benefit of the change. It is important to note your Housing Benefit may be suspended and/or cancelled if you don’t provide the information.
What if I want my housing benefit to pay you direct?
Come into the office where we can complete a direct to landlord request. This will be sent directly to your local council by a member of the team.
I can’t pay the difference between housing benefit and my rent. What help can I get?
Discretionary payments are awards, not benefit payments. The awards are usually only made for a short time and are not a long-term solution. You can only apply for a discretionary payment if you are currently entitled to Housing Benefit, the Housing Element of Universal Credit and/or Local Council Tax Reduction.
Before making a decision the housing benefit team will look at;
- Your total income.
- Your expenses.
- If anyone else in your house is able to help you.
- If you have any loans or debts.
- If you could manage your money better to ease the situation.
- If you or anyone in your family is ill or disabled.
- Disability adaptations.
- The size of your property.
- If you are a foster carer.
- If you have tried to put the situation right yourself.
What am I entitled to?
If you’re single and under 35, you will receive Housing Benefit for bed-sit accommodation or a single room in shared accommodation.
Sharing bedrooms, the following are expected to share:
- An adult couple
- 2 children under 16 of the same sex
- 2 children under 10 (regardless of sex)
The following can have their own bedroom:
- A single adult (16 or over)
- A child that would normally share but shared bedrooms are already taken, for example, you have 3 children and 2 already share
Usually you won’t get Housing Benefit if:
- Your savings are over £16,000 – unless you get Guarantee Credit or Pension Credit
- You are a full-time student – unless you’re disabled or have children
- You are residing in the UK as an European Economic Area jobseeker
- You are subject to immigration control and your visa states that you can’t claim public funds
What is Local Housing Allowance?
If you rent a home through the private sector the amount of Local Housing Allowance you’re entitled to is based on the size of your household. This is not directly related to the rent that your landlord charges you for the space that you occupy. So the benefit received may be lower than the rent you are charged.
- Shared room rate – £65.48 per week
- 1 bed self contained – £123.58 per week
- 2 bed self contained – £153.02 per week
- 3 bed self contained – £188.79 per week
- 4 bed self contained – £253.15 per week