Claiming Housing Benefit
Housing benefit is available to anyone who is working in a low income job or is receiving benefits. There are two ways to claim: direct from the council or when making a new claim for other benefits.
How to claim housing benefit directly from the council
This is the method used by people who are currently in work. You will need to obtain a housing benefit claim form from your council by the phone or face to face. This form must be completed within a month.
To be safe you should make a claim for a housing benefit as soon as possible. Housing benefit is usually paid from the Monday after the date you tell the council you want to claim, not the date the council gets your form.
How to claim housing benefit with other benefits
You can also put in a claim for housing benefits when you make a new claim for:
Employment support allowance
Contact Jobcentre Plus or the Pension Service for a benefits claim pack which includes a short housing benefit claim form.
How to complete a housing benefit form
Give as much information as possible. Answer every question or the council may send your form back.
Be honest when completing your form. If you lie or withhold information you could be prosecuted.
The housing benefit claim form lists the evidence you must provide. Return the form to the council even if you are waiting for evidence. The council could decide that you are not entitled to any housing benefit if it does not receive all information it needs within one month.
The claim form should go to your local council’s housing benefit office. If you are claiming other benefits at the same time, JobCentre Plus or the Pension Service will send your claim form to your council.
It is safer to deliver the housing benefit claim form in person. Get a receipt for the form and any evidence you hand in. Ask for photocopies of the originals in case they get lost.