Discretionary Housing Payments guidance manual

This guidance is for local authorities in England and Wales who are responsible for administering Discretionary Housing Payments.


Discretionary Housing Payments guidance manual

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This guidance includes advice on how Discretionary Housing Payments can be used to provide support to claimants affected by some of the main welfare reforms, including:

  • application of the benefit cap
  • removal of the spare room subsidy in the social rented sector
  • reductions in Local Housing Allowance
Published 28 August 2013
Last updated 1 February 2021 + show all updates
  1. Updated version of guidance including the Discretionary Housing Payments Good Practice Guide: January 2021.

  2. Updated section 2 of the guide to describe what a Discretionary Housing Payment cannot cover under Universal Credit.

  3. Changes to: paragraph 1.6 explaining Discretionary Housing Payments (DHPs); paragraph 1.13 about DHPs in Scotland; paragraph 2.0 about award criteria; paragraphs 2.3 and 2.4 about rent deposits and rent in advance; paragraphs 3.14 and 3.15 about information a claimant can give; paragraphs 7.1 to 7.4 about DHP funding; paragraph 7.15 about former Grenfell Tower residents; Section 1 about the benefit cap; Section 2 guidance about the removal of the spare room subsidy following court judgments; Section 3 about local housing allowance; Section 5 examples of good practice in paragraphs 5.3 and 5.4; Section 6 about profiling budget in paragraph 6.15; Appendix B about DHP monitoring.

  4. Revised Discretionary Housing Payments manual to reflect that this guidance stopped applying to Scotland from April 2017.

  5. Published revised DHP manual with updates to Benefit cap and the removal of the spare room subsidy.

  6. Published revised DHP manual updated to reflect welfare reforms being introduced during 2016/17 along with examples of good practice.

  7. Published revised PDF with formatting errors corrected.

  8. Updated the 'Good practice guide' sections.

  9. Updated the 'Good practice guide' sections.

  10. Updated with latest guidance manual to reflect amendments to the Discretionary Financial Assistance Regulations which ensure the scheme covers the introduction of Universal Credit and abolition of Council Tax benefit.

  11. First published.