This is the benefit which helps people with their rent. It can be paid to people who are paying rent to private landlords or to social landlords such as housing associations or the council. It can also help other charges such as site fees for caravans and mooring fees for houseboats.
It has a needs calculation which is made up of a number of different amounts which are added together to arrive at a maximum figure from which the benefit is calculated. These amounts include rates for single people and couples, additional needs for people with disabilities, additional amounts for people who care for others.
The maximum amount of help is reduced where the person claiming Housing Benefit has earnings or other income or has savings or capital over £6000. Where somebody has savings of capital over £16,000 there is no entitlement to this benefit unless they also receive guarantee pension credit.
In April 2013, the government introduced the Under Occupancy Charge, commonly known as the ‘Bedroom Tax’. For one unoccupied room, you lose 14% of your entitlement to Housing Benefit. For two or more unoccupied rooms, you lose 25% of your entitlement. There are exceptions to this, so it is advisable to get support from one of our listed providers if you have to pay it.
Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP) is paid in addition to Housing Benefit. It provides extra money on a short term basis when you need help to meet your housing costs. It is intended to support people while they resolve their financial difficulties. This is not a benefit and there is no statutory right to receive a payment.
You can apply directly Housing Benefit application. These links provide additional information on Discretionary Housing Payments and bedroom tax.
You may find the Turn2Us Benefits Calculator useful if you want to find out what you are entitled to. You can also get support with the application or other benefits advice from one of the local Providers listed in the Provider’s Box below.
If you are sure you can apply for this benefit but just need help to fill out the form, there are also volunteers at the Council’s Checkpoints who can help you fill out the form.