Understanding Local Housing Allowances rates and broad rental market areas

How Local Housing Allowances (LHA) rates are calculated and where to find your LHA rate.

Applies to England


Broad Rental Market Area (BRMA) Review Protocol

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Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates are used to calculate Housing Benefit for tenants renting from private landlords.  

How Local Housing Allowance rates are calculated 

Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates are decided by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) using information provided by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). 

LHA rates are based on private market rents being paid by tenants in a Broad Rental Market Area (BRMA). This is the area within which a person might reasonably be expected to live. 

These rents are being paid by people with the same number of bedrooms as the property where you live, or the number of rooms you and your household needs. 

VOA rent officers collect rental data from letting agents, landlords, tenants, and other sources.  

This data is then shared with DWP on an annual basis. 

You can find the LHA rates on LHA-Direct by searching by postcode or local authority area. 

You can also check how many bedrooms you may be eligible for, based on the number of people in your household. 

Contact us

For Local Authority queries please email 

More information

Published 1 June 2013
Last updated 13 November 2023 + show all updates
  1. 'Contact' information has been updated.

  2. Body text updated

  3. Updated in conjunction with the publication of "Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates applicable from April 2016 – March 2017"

  4. First published.