We provide two schemes that help people who are on a low income pay their rent and Council Tax:
When tenants are renting from private landlords, we use a number of factors to work out any entitlement to these benefits including
- the Local Housing Allowance
- the tenant’s income.
- any capital or savings the tenant has
- other household circumstances
Providing information about the tenancy
When someone applies for Housing Benefit or Council Tax Support, we will ask them to provide information about their tenancy. If they are not sure of the details, they may ask you to complete a landlords form which will give us the details we need.
Changes of circumstances
It is important as a landlord that you tell us immediately about:
- tenants moving in or out
- changes in circumstances that may affect your tenant's entitlement if we make Housing Benefit payments directly to you
Your tenant is also responsible to report changes.
Housing Benefit Payments
In some circumstances, we may pay Housing Benefit directly to a landlord.
The tenant will need to ask us to make direct payments to their landlord by completing our direct payment form.
Once we receive their request, we consider making their Housing Benefit payments directly to a landlord.
You can contact us if you have any questions about direct payments.
You can use Open Portal secure service to view your tenants payments online. You will need to sign up for the Open Portal using your landlord reference.
We usually pay Housing Benefit directly to the tenant. The tenant is responsible for paying the rent to the landlord.
Tenants in arrears
If your tenant is eight or more weeks in arrears with their rent we may consider paying direct to you. To ask us about this you must contact us and:
- confirm the total amount of arrears
- provide proof such as a bank statement for the account the rent was previously paid into
We will only pay Housing Benefit directly to a landlord until there are no longer eight or more weeks rent arrears.
If there is a dispute between a tenant and a landlord about the amount of rent arrears, we will suspend direct Housing Benefit payments while we investigate the issue.
We can only discuss a Housing Benefit claim with a landlord if the tenant has given their permission.
You tenant needs to write to us to give us their permission to discuss their Housing Benefit claim with you.
If your tenant completes the online Housing and Council Tax claim form they can give authority for data sharing as part of the claims process.