Housing benefit

About housing benefit

Housing benefit can cover or pay towards your rent. It can also give extra money towards things you have to pay for, such as children's play areas and the cleaning of communal areas.

Housing benefit does not cover things like:

  • food
  • water charges
  • personal laundry or heating, except for communal areas

It doesn't matter whether you pay rent to us, to a private landlord, to a hostel or a guest house.

If you receive housing benefit, you will need to tell us about any changes in your circumstances.

Who can get help

From 11 April 2018 you can claim housing benefit from us, or Universal Credit from the government. Claim from us if you are either:

  • pension age
  • living in a property where you get support either direct from your landlord or from an agency that works on behalf of your landlord
  • living in a property that you rented from us because you were homeless

Tenants who rent from private landlords are assessed for local housing allowance.

Claiming housing benefit

If you want to claim housing benefit you should complete a benefit claim. You should also read about proof you need to have and 'fast tracking' claims.

The quickest and easiest way to claim is online. You can make a claim using the application form below. You do not need to create an account to make a claim.

Claim housing benefit or council tax support

Housing benefit payments may be reduced if bedrooms are under-occupied – go to GOV.UK: removal of the spare room subsidy.

After you claim housing benefit

After we have assessed your claim for housing benefit, we will send you a letter in the post to let you know the outcome. This is usually 2 weeks after we get all the information we need.

We cannot answer any questions about your claim until we've finished the assessment and you receive our letter, so please do not phone or email us to ask.

If you're entitled to housing benefit, you can check how much you'll get and when you'll be paid by using our online My Account council tax service.

You can register for My Account if you've not used it before.

My Account – council tax

You must tell us when there are changes to your circumstances.