Housing Benefit

5. How to claim

How you claim Housing Benefit depends on whether you’re also making a new claim for any other benefits.

You’ll need to provide evidence to support your claim.

You may need to claim Universal Credit instead. Check you’re eligible before you apply.

If you’re only applying for Housing Benefit

Apply through your local council if you’re only making a new claim for Housing Benefit. You can still make a new claim if you’re already getting other benefits.

If you’re applying for other benefits

You can claim Housing Benefit as part of your application for other benefits. How you apply for Housing Benefit depends on which benefit you’re applying for.

Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support or Jobseeker’s Allowance

Contact Jobcentre Plus to claim Housing Benefit along with your application for the following benefits:

  • Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Jobseeker’s Allowance

Jobcentre Plus will send details of your claim for Housing Benefit to your council.

Jobcentre Plus
Telephone: 0800 055 6688
Textphone: 0800 023 4888
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Find out about call charges

Pension Credit

Contact the Pension Service to claim Housing Benefit along with your application for Pension Credit.

The Pension Service will send details of your claims for Housing Benefit to your council.

Pension Service
Telephone: 0800 99 1234
Textphone: 0800 169 0133
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Find out about call charges

Universal Credit

You usually can’t get Universal Credit and Housing Benefit at the same time (unless you’re in certain kinds of supported housing). You can get help paying for housing with your Universal Credit payment instead. You’ll have to pay rent to your landlord directly.

Claiming in advance and backdating

You can claim in advance by up to 13 weeks (or 17 weeks if you’re aged 60 or over), for example if you’re moving. You won’t usually get any money before you move.

You might also be able to get your claim backdated - ask your council.

Appeal a decision

You can ask your council for a Housing Benefit decision to be reconsidered.

If you’re unhappy with the response you can appeal the decision.