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Housing Benefit is paid by the local Council to help with your rent. It is sometimes called rent rebate or rent allowance and Local Housing Allowance.
It does not cover costs other than rent and other housing costs, for example, mortgage interest. If you get Income Support, Employment Support Allowance, Jobseekers Allowance Income Based or Pension Credit Guarantee You may be able to get help with mortgage interest as part of these benefits.
You may be entitled to Housing Benefit if you are:
On a low income?
You do not have to get any other benefits to claim Housing Benefit.
Savings over £16,000 usually mean you will not be able to get Housing Benefit, although this £16,000 limit does not apply if you or a partner get Pension Credit Guarantee.
Savings over £6,000 (£10,000 for Pensioners) will usually affect how much Housing Benefit you can get.
There are special rules if you are single and aged under 35 years. (single room rent restrictions) and have a private let
Some asylum seekers and people who are sponsored to be in the UK cannot get Housing Benefit.
You cannot usually get Housing Benefit if you live in a close relative's household.
You cannot usually get Housing Benefit if you are a full-time student, unless you are disabled or have children.
To work out your Housing Benefit, the Council will look at:
Money you and your partner have coming in, including earnings, some benefits, Tax Credits and things like occupational pensions
Your savings and your partner's savings
Your circumstances, such as your age, the ages and size of your family, whether you or any of your family are disabled, and whether anyone who lives with you could help with the rent.
The Council will also look at whether:
The amount of rent is reasonable for your particular home
Your home is a reasonable size for you and your family
The amount of rent is reasonable for the area your home is in or by using your Local Housing Allowance rate.
Local Housing Allowance (LHA) was introduced for all new private lets taken out after April 2008 this will effect entitlement to Housing Benefit for all new private tenents claiming Housing Beneift after this date contact your local Council for your local LHA rates or check Here.
The most Housing Benefit you can get is the same as your eligible rent. This may not be the same as your full rent. The rates used to work out your Housing Benefit payment are generally the same as the allowance and premiums that make up Income Support, Jobseekers Allowance Income Based, Pension Credit Guarantee or Employment Support Allowance.
There are a few exceptions listed below.
Only use the amounts shown as a guide.
Deductions for non-dependants
Aged 18 or over, not in remunerative work
aged 25 or over and receiving Income Support
Jobseekers Allowance Income Based
Employment Support Allowance
gross income less than £124
deduction = £13.60
Aged 18 or over and in remunerative work with gross income of:
Less than £124 deduct £13.60
£124 to £182.99 deduct £31.25
£183 to £237.99 deduct £42.90
£238 to £315.99 deduct £70.20
£316 to £393.99 deduct £79.95
£394 and over deduct £87.75
If you are eligible, claim straight away. If you delay you may lose benefit.
You can claim up to 13 weeks before you become entitled to Housing Benefit., so if you know you are moving to a new address soon, you can claim Housing Benefit. You will not usually receive any money before you move in.
If you claim Income Support, Employment Support Allowance, Jobseekers Allowance or Pension Credit you will get forms to claim Housing Benefit with your claim pack or claim on the phone line 0800 0 55 66 88. Complete and return the form with your Income Support, Employment Support Allowance, Jobseekers Allowance or Pension Credit claim form.
If you do not claim Income Support, Employment Support Allowance, Jobseekers Allowance or Pension Credit you can get forms for Housing Benefit from your local Council.