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How housing benefit is paid

Housing benefit is paid in different ways depending on the type of claim.

Housing benefit payments 
Type of claimPayment details
Six Town Housing tenantsPaid weekly to your rent account, reducing  the amount of rent you have to pay
Housing association tenantsPaid four weeks in arrears to either the tenant or the landlord
Tenants of private landlords who claimed before April 2008Paid four weeks in arrears, to either the tenant or the landlord
Tenants of private landlords who claimed after April 2008 (local housing allowance)Paid four weeks in arrears; payments are normally made to the tenant

Dates of four weekly payments

We make four weekly payments, for tenants of housing associations and private landlords, on a regular cycle. Please see our housing benefit payment dates calendar 2014-2015 for further details.

If you have made a new claim we will make a one off payment when your claim is assessed to bring you into line with the payment cycle, so you don't have to wait until the next regular 4 weekly payment date.

Paying local housing allowance to landlords

There is no automatic right for local housing allowance to be paid directly to landlords. However there are safeguards which mean that in some circumstances landlords can receive payments. These include situations where:

  • the tenant is unable to manage their own affairs.
  • the tenant is unlikely to pay their rent.
  • there are rent arrears of over 8 weeks.
  • the landlord agrees to reduce the rent and this enable a tenant to obtain a new tenancy or continue with an existing tenancy

Find out more about payments of local housing allowance to landlords.

Payments to bank accounts

If we are paying housing benefit directly to you it will normally be paid into your bank or building society account by a direct credit transfer called BACS. If you do not already have a bank or building society account, please see our basic bank accounts page, for details about accounts available from banks and building societies in the local area