Housing Benefit

Housing Benefit is administered by your local authority and helps people on a low income to pay their rent whether to a private landlord, Housing Association or the Council. You cannot claim Housing Benefit from your local authority to help pay a mortgage.   There’s no set amount of Housing Benefit.

How much you get depends on:

  • If you rent privately or from a council
  • Your household income and circumstances (including your partner’s)
  • Savings

Council Tax: disability reduction scheme

Also administered by your local authority. You can get a disability reduction if any resident has a substantially and permanently disabling condition and your home meets one of the following:  

  • An additional bathroom or kitchen needed by the disabled person
  • A room needed by and predominantly used by the disabled person
  • Space for the disabled person to use a wheelchair indoors  

Bedroom tax

Technically known as the Under Occupancy Penalty, it's become commonly known as the Bedroom Tax.  Set out in the Welfare Reform, people will see a reduction in their housing benefits if they have a spare bedroom in their home.  The criteria will pay Housing Benefit to allow for one bedroom for each person or couple living as part of the household, with some exceptions.  Disabled People are not exempt from the penalty but you can apply for a discretionary housing payment from you local authority to make up this short fall.  Aspire's Bedroom Tax Q&A has much more information on this Penalty and what it might mean for you.

Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI)

Support for Mortgage Interest helps home-owners with the costs of mortgage payments and some loans for repairs and improvements to the home when claiming certain benefits.   The qualifying benefits are:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based jobseeker's allowance
  • Income-related employment and support allowance
  • Pension Credit.  

To claim Support for Mortgage Interest, please call Jobcentre Plus on 0800 055 6688.

Go back to Welfare Benefits