For changes taking place from April 2013 see Housing Benefit changes for under-occupancy.
Who can claim?
To claim Housing Benefit you must:
- Occupy the property for which you are claiming as your home
- Be liable to pay rent for the property
- Either be entitled to Income Support, Jobseeker's Allowance (Income based), Employment and Support Allowance (Income related) or have a low income
- You must normally live at the property you are claiming for.
You cannot claim for a property let on a lease of more than 21 years except for shared or co-ownership schemes, or where you are the owner-occupier, or if you are a tenant in a property owned by the Crown.
People with over £16,000 in savings will not normally qualify for any benefit.
How it is worked out?
Each year the Government issues guideline figures indicating the amount people require to meet their basic needs. These figures vary depending on a persons circumstances. The amount of benefit may also be reduced if there are other adults living in the household, for example children over the age of 18.
If you think that you could qualify for benefit you should complete an application form.
How much can be awarded?
Benefit can only be awarded towards the eligible LHA rate for a property.
The maximum amount of benefit is 100% of the LHA rate, and this amount will normally be received by a person on Income Support, Jobseeker's Allowance (Income based), Employment and Support Allowance (Income related).
If you think you have 'good cause' for a late claim please make sure that you fill in a Benefit Application Form for the period in question.
Still not sure if you qualify? Don't miss out, make a claim.