Housing Benefit payment date: When will my Housing Benefit be paid?
In May 2018, more than four million Brits claimed Housing Benefits. That is the most up-to-date statistic from the Department for Work and Pensions, but it’s likely that the number of claimants is soaring at the moment due to the financial impact of the pandemic. When Housing Benefit is paid depends on the individual’s circumstances. Express.co.uk explains when your Housing Benefit will be paid.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak made changes to the Housing Benefit system at the end of March in light of the pandemic.
He said: “I’m announcing today, nearly £1billion of support for renters, by increasing the generosity of housing benefit and Universal Credit, so that the local housing allowance will cover at least 30 percent of market rents in your area.”
This is the biggest impact that the government has had on the economy in recent history, Mr Sunak added.
What is Housing Benefit?
According to Gov.uk, Housing Benefit can help you pay your rent if you’re unemployed, on a low income or claiming benefits. It’s being replaced by Universal Credit.
You can make a new claim for Housing Benefit if any of the following apply:
- you’re getting the severe disability premium, or are entitled to it
- you got or were entitled to the severe disability premium within the last month and are still eligible for it
- you have reached State Pension age
- you’re in supported, sheltered or temporary housing
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Can I make a claim for Housing Benefit?
There are more conditions than the one listed above.
If you live with your partner, you can only make a new claim for Housing Benefit if either:
- you and your partner have both reached State Pension age
- one of you has reached State Pension age and started claiming Pension Credit (for you as a couple) before 15 May 2019
If you have been claiming Housing Benefit since before May 15, 2019, you will continue to get it even if your partner is under State Pension age.
However, if your circumstances change and your Housing Benefits are stopped, you can’t start claiming it again unless you and your partner are eligible.
If you are in supported, sheltered or temporary housing, you can make a new claim if:
- you’re living in temporary accommodation, such as a B&B arranged by your council
- you’re living in a refuge for survivors of domestic abuse
- you’re living in sheltered or supported housing (such as a hostel) which provides you with ‘care, support or supervision’
Who is not eligible for Housing Benefit?
You probably won’t get Housing Benefits if:
- your savings are over £16,000 – unless you get Guarantee Credit of Pension Credit
- you’re paying a mortgage on your own home – you may be able to get Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI)
- you live in the home of a close relative
- you’re already claiming Universal Credit (unless you’re in temporary or supported housing)
- you live with your partner and they are already claiming Housing Benefit
- you’re a full-time student – unless you’re disabled
- you’re residing in the UK as a European Economic Area jobseeker
- you’re an asylum seeker or sponsored to be in the UK
- you’re subject to immigration control and your granted leave states that you cannot claim public funds
- you’re a Crown Tenant
- you’ve reached State Pension age but your live-in partner has not – unless you had an existing claim as a couple before 15 May 2019
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How much Housing Benefit can I get?
There is no set amount of Housing Benefit.
What you get depends on whether you rent privately or from a council.
The maximum Housing Benefit payment you can get is usually called the ‘Local Housing Allowance rate’, and it also depends on where you live, what kind of property you live in, and how many bedrooms you need.
Use the official benefits calculator to find out what you could get.
The calculator will also show you what extra help is available.
If your rent is more than you get, you will probably have to pay the rest yourself unless you get a DHP.
When is Housing Benefit paid?
Once your claim has been processed, it should be two weeks before you are paid.
If you rent from the council, your benefits will be paid straight into your bank account on the day the rent is due.
If you are a private or housing association tenant, your benefits can be paid every two or four weeks monthly, depending on when your rent is due.
You can ask the council to pay it more or less frequently if you need them to.
It’s paid in arrears after your rent is due.
This means you are paying for the week or month just gone, rather than the one coming.
If your rent is due on a weekend or bank holiday, you are normally paid on the working day before.
Check your local borough’s Housing Benefit payment dates on their website to be safe.
If there is a delay in your payment, you should speak to your housing officer or local council to find out why.
Who is Housing Benefit paid to?
Housing Benefit is normally paid to you, straight into your bank account.
However, it will be paid to your landlord or letting agent on two occasions.
For example, when you or your landlord tell the council you have more than 8 weeks’ rent arrears.
Or, when part of your other benefits like Jobseeker’s Allowance is already being paid to them because of arrears.
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