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Housing Benefit is a means tested award to help you pay rent if you are on a low income.

Who can get Housing Benefit?

You need to:

  • rent your address
  • be living at your property
  • have a low income - you can be receiving benefits, in work or self employed

Housing Benefit and Universal Credit

If you are getting Universal Credit you don't have to make a separate claim for Housing Benefit. Help with your rent is included in your Universal Credit.

In Bury Council's area Universal Credit is available for all working age households unless you:

  • live in supported accommodation - where you landlord provides care and support as part of your rent
  • live in temporary accommodation - when the council has provided you with housing because you were homeless

You cannot get Housing Benefit if you:

  • are getting Universal Credit
  • have over £16,000 in savings - the only exception to this rule is if you are receiving the guarantee element of Pension Credit
  • are a full-time student - there are exceptions to this rule for students who either have children, are aged over 60, or who are disabled
  • live in a care home, a nursing home or an elderly person's home - you may still be entitled if you move into a care home on a temporary basis
  • are an asylum seeker who has not been given refugee status or indefinite or exceptional leave to remain in the UK
  • have been admitted to the UK on condition that you have 'no recourse to public funds
  • are a sponsored immigrant who has lived here for less than five years
  • are in the UK illegally or your permission to stay has run out

You are unlikely to get Housing Benefit if you:

  • used to own the property, which you now rent
  • pay rent to a close relative who lives with you
  • rent a former joint home from your ex-partner
  • are the parent or guardian of your landlord's child
  • live in your home as part of your job
  • rent the property from a company and you are a director or an employee of the company
  • rent from a trust of which you are a trustee or beneficiary

We will consider each claim individually, so please contact us if you find yourself in one of these situations.

How much Housing Benefit could you get?

If you are a tenant of Six Town Housing and a housing association, your maximum amount of Housing Benefit will usually be the same the amount of rent you are charged.

However there are restrictions on the amount of Housing Benefit if you rent from a social landlord and your property is too large for the size of your household.

If you rent your property from a private landlord, the maximum amount of benefit is based on the size of the tenant's household, and is worked out using the Local Housing Allowance scheme.

There may also be deductions for other adults who live with you and who are not your partner.

Housing Benefit is a means tested and the income and savings of everyone in your household affects how much you can get.