If you are on a low income, you can normally get help towards your rent.
You will either get Housing Benefit from your council, or Universal Credit (which is replacing six benefits for people of working age) from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).
If you are of working age and you currently get Housing Benefit, you will move to Universal Credit by 2024. If your circumstances change or you make a first claim, you will be put on Universal Credit straight away. We recommend that all our tenants move to monthly rent payments in advance, as soon as they can, so that you are ready for the change.
New Universal Credit claims are made online. There is a five-week wait for your first payment, but you can ask for a loan.
Keep your claim up to date
It is your responsibility to tell the authorities if your circumstances or rent payments change.
If you get Housing Benefit, you must tell the council. During the pandemic, council offices have been shut. This means that you must write to or email them instead. For rent updates, you need to scan or take a photo of your increase letter. You can then email your council, as follows:
If you get Universal Credit, you have to make changes to your online account. For rent increases, you will see a prompt in your ‘To do list’ in April. Make sure you provide rent increase details as soon as possible, because there are no backdated payments for Universal Credit.
For further advice, call our Customer 1st Team.