Housing Benefit

Housing Benefit is financial support to help you to pay your rent. It is gradually being replaced by Universal Credit. Most people who need help to pay for their rent will need to apply for Universal Credit.

Check if you are eligible for Housing Benefit

You won't be eligible for Housing Benefit if:

  • you have a capital amount over £16,000 (savings and investments), unless you are receiving Pension Credit Guaranteed Credit (PCGC)
  • you own and occupy your own home, instead you can apply for Support for Mortgage Interest

Before you apply for Housing Benefit please use our entitlement calculator to check if you:

  • are eligible
  • should apply for Universal Credit instead of Housing Benefit

Entitlement calculator

Who can apply for Housing Benefit?

You can apply for Housing Benefit if you are on a low income or unemployed and:

  • you are a pensioner - you have reached the qualifying age for State Pension Credit. If you are in a couple you will need to check the rules for couples.
  • you will be receiving the Severe Disability Premium until you are moved onto UC by the department for work and pensions in future
  • you live in specified accommodation (this is where care is provided by or on behalf of the social sector landlord, a hostel, domestic violence refuge)
  • you live in temporary accommodation (this is housing arranged by a council because they have decided that you are homeless)

If the circumstances above do not apply to you, you will need to apply for Universal Credit.

How much will I receive?

To work out the amount of Housing Benefit you will receive, we will look at your income and savings and your personal circumstances. To get an estimate on the amount you might receive, you can use the entitlement calculator.

How will I be paid?

You can view information about payments on the Housing Benefit payment page.