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Discretionary housing payments

If you receive some help with your housing costs, but are still struggling to pay your rent, you may be able to get some extra help from a Discretionary Housing Payment. This is only available to people on Housing Benefit or Universal Credit (which includes an element for housing costs) and who are in short-term financial need.

A Discretionary Housing Payment can cover housing costs including:

  • Your rent

  • Rent in advance or deposits

  • Removal costs or other lump sum costs

There are limited fund available so this type of award will only be made to those most in need. It is not intended to supplement Housing Benefit or Universal Credit on a long-term basis. 

When can a Discretionary Housing Payment be awarded? Toggle accordion

To be considered for a Discretionary Housing Payment:

  • you need to be in receipt of Housing Benefit and

  • the Housing Benefit you receive must be less than your contractual rent – the payment cannot be used for services included in your rent such as utility bills 

or

  • being paid the housing element of Universal Credit and 

  • the housing element you are paid must be less than your contractual rent – the payment cannot be used for services included in your rent such as utility bills 

How to apply for Discretionary Housing Payment Toggle accordion

Please download and complete the Discretionary Housing Payment application form from the link below or by making a request in writing. You can then upload the form using the contact us button below.

Contact us

What happens next? Toggle accordion

We will look at your application and decide whether we can award you additional help. We may ask you to provide extra information in support of your request.

If we make the award we will write and tell you:

  • the reason we have made the award

  • how much you will be awarded and

  • the period of the award

If we decide that we cannot make the award we will write to you and tell you:

  • the reason we have not made the award and

  • what you can do if you do not agree with our decision

What happens if I do not agree with your decision? Toggle accordion

If we are unable to change our decision your request will be heard by the Housing Review Panel. The panel meets approximately every six weeks.

We will write to you and let you know the outcome of your claim. We call this a decision notice.

More information

Further information can be found in the Discretionary Housing Payment Policy