What if I still have a shortfall in my rent?

I am receiving benefit but I still need help meeting the shortfall in my rent

You may be able to get further help through the discretionary housing payment scheme.

The discretionary housing payment scheme was introduced to assist housing benefit claimants who may need further help with their housing costs.

We receive some money from the government towards the discretionary housing payment scheme. The amount we can spend is limited and not everyone who claims a discretionary housing payment will be given assistance.

Who can claim a discretionary housing payment?

You must be receiving some housing benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit in order to claim a discretionary housing payment.

You cannot receive more than the shortfall in your weekly eligible rent.

A discretionary housing payment cannot help you with service charges not covered by the benefit scheme – such as heating, lighting, hot water, and other fuel costs or water rates, sewerage or other environmental costs

You cannot receive a discretionary housing payment to make up for any reduction in other social security benefits as a result of any sanctions applied by the Department of Work and Pensions.

The amount awarded is entirely at the discretion of the council. Each individual case will be considered on its own merits. We will look at the individual circumstances of your claim and will consider the other options available to you before deciding whether to award a discretionary housing payment.

You can also view a copy of our policy regarding awarding discretionary housing payments:
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