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Housing Benefit

Housing Benefits Explained

What is housing benefit?

Housing Benefit is paid by your local authority and is a contribution towards your rent payments. You can claim Housing Benefit if you are over 16 years of age, are liable to pay rent and have an income below a certain level. 

How much will I be entitled to?

The amount of Housing Benefit you are entitled to depends on your income, rent and savings. It also depends on whether other people live with you in the property (i.e. partners and children). For an estimate of what you may be entitled to please click here.

Will I have to pay Bedroom Tax?

If you are of 'working age' and are underoccupying your property, any award of Housing Benefit will be reduced by either 14% of your total weekly rent charge (if underoccupying by 1 bedroom) or by 25% (if you are underoccupying the property by 2 or more bedrooms).  If you are not sure whether you are underoccupying the property, please contact our Income Management Team.

If you have been advised that your award of Housing Benefit has a reduction in place due to the bedroom tax, and you are struggling to make payments to make up the weekly rent due, please either contact your local authority to make an application for Discretionary Housing Payments, or contact our Income Management Team. 

How do apply for housing benefit?

You should contact your local authority's Housing Benefit team for information on how to make a claim. Please see the section below 'contacting your local Housing Benefit office'.  Our Income Management team can also advise you on this.

Can you help me make a claim?

Yes, if you are having difficulty making a claim and require assistance, please contact our Income Management team on 0800 035 22 11. Alternatively, you can also visit your local Housing Benefit office. 

How will my Housing Benefit be paid?

You can ask for Housing Benefit to be paid direct to us.  We can then monitor the payments and inform you should your Housing Benefit payments stop.

What should I do if my situation changes?

You must inform Housing Benefit immediately if your income or household changes. If you fail to disclose any changes in your circumstances, you will be liable for repayment of any overpaid Housing Benefit you received or that was sent directly to us. Please also inform us by phoning our Income Management Team or email We can offer you help and support and refer you to external agencies where necessary.

Can I still be a Diamond Service member?

Yes. All our customers are eligible to become a Diamond Service member if they have 26 weeks of consecutive rent payment, or 26 weeks of consecutive agreement payments to repay any rent arrears.

If you are no longer entitled to Housing Benefit and you fail to make a payment, you will lose your Diamond Service membership. If you have any queries, contact our Income Management Team.

Housing Benefit arrears

If your rent account is in arrears because of a delay in your local authority processing your claim for benefit, it is your responsibility to contact them and pursue your claim. You must also notify the Income Management Team.

If you have any queries about your rent and/or your Housing Benefit, please call our Income Management Team on 0800 035 22 11 or 0300 303 8324 (from mobiles) if you are experiencing problems with your Housing Benefit claim.