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 now need to apply for Universal Credit. Please read the guidance below so that you can apply for the correct benefit.
You will not be eligible for Housing Benefit or Universal Credit if:
- your and/or your partners savings and investments are above £16,000 - 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
Check if you should apply for Housing Benefit or Universal Credit
You can apply for Housing Benefit if:
- 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 you will need to apply for Universal Credit.
To confirm if you should apply for Housing Benefit or Universal Credit please use the benefit entitlement calculator. The calculator should only be used a guide as it will only give you an estimation of your entitlement.
If you apply for Universal Credit and need help to pay your Council Tax, you will need to make a separate application for Council Tax Support.
Check how much Housing Benefit you will be entitled to
To get an estimate on the amount of Housing Benefit you might receive, you can use the entitlement calculator. The calculator should only be used a guide as it will only give you an estimation of your entitlement.
The amount of Housing Benefit you are entitled to when you are private tenant is determined by a Local Housing Allowance (LHA).
The LHA rate for your household will be the maximum amount of benefit you will be entitled to. Find out more about the Local Housing Allowance.
Housing Benefit payments
You can view information about how often and who we can pay the Housing Benefit to on the Housing Benefit payment page.