Housing Benefit Tenants - renting a private property
Since October 1996 all applicants for housing benefit have their benefits paid 4 weeks in arrears.
This means a tenant moving into new accommodation will not only have to find money for the deposit, the tenant will also have to find money to pay the first months rent as well until the landlord receives the housing benefit.
Housing benefit can be paid direct to the landlord.
Housing benefit is not available to owner-occupiers.
Tenants in receipt of income support or income based Jobseekers Allowance are eligible for assistance with up to 100% of their housing costs. Those on low incomes may be eligible for assistance for a proportion of their housing costs.
If a tenant owes rent arrears of 8 weeks or more then housing benefit must be paid to the landlord direct. If a tenant is entitled to claim housing benefit in the past and did not claim they can make a claim and ask for the payments to be backdated. The local authority has power to backdate for up to 12 months if good reason for not claiming is shown.
Rent officers are able to set a level of rent known as "single room rent". If a tenant is living in a bedsit or shared flat or house and is under 25 without children this could apply. The rent fixed by the rent officer could be lower than the rent the landlord charges.
If there is a risk that the tenant could become homeless because they cannot pay the full rent they can apply to their local housing office for "exceptional hardship payment".
- Private Housing
- Assured Shorthold - Definition
- Assured Shorthold - Possession
- Accelerated Possession Procedure
- Warrants of Execution
- Defending Possession Proceedings
- Tenancies before 15th January 1989
- Housing Benefit Tenants
- Property Disrepair
- Mortgages and Repossession
- Alternatives to a Possession Order
- Property Foreclosure
- Housing Loans (other than mortgages)
- Raising money for mortgage arrears
- Tenants of Mortgaged Homes
- Consenting to a charge on your property under pressure
- Bankruptcy & your home
- Human Rights Act 1998 & your home
- Links & Addresses