If you have a low income or you receive certain types of benefit, you may be entitled to claim Housing and / or Council Tax Benefit. You can make a claim whilst working if your circumstances require you to do so.
Who can claim Housing Benefit?
Housing Benefit is available to anyone who is on a low income and who has to pay rent for a property that they live in as their main home. There are different types of Housing Benefit available depending on who you rent from and when you made your claim. You will need to complete an application form and provide evidence of your identification and income.
Housing Benefit can only help with the rent you pay. If your rent covers other services like fuel, bills, meals or water charges, a deduction will be made from your Housing Benefit.
Different types of Housing Benefit:
- Rent Rebate: If you pay your rent to the Council, you may be entitled to Rent Rebate
- Rent Allowance: If you rent your home from a private landlord or Housing Association, you may be entitled to Rent Allowance
- Shared Ownership: If you own your home under a joint ownership agreement, usually with a Housing Association, you may be entitled to help with the payments for the rental part
Who can't claim Housing Benefit?
In general, you cannot claim Housing Benefit if;
- You don't pay rent to live in the property on a commercial basis
- You are not resident at the property
- You pay rent to a close relative who lives in the property
- The accommodation is considered tied accommodation (you have to live there for your job e.g school caretaker)
- You rent from a Government Department such as the Department of Defence (if you pay mesne profits or damages for trespass, this does not apply)
- You have £16,000 or more in capital, including second properties, shares and investments
- You have recently come to live in the UK (there are exceptions to this rule)
- You own your property