Discretionary housing payments

Discretionary housing payments are intended to help people with their housing costs such as rent when housing benefit or Universal Credit does not cover the full rent. They can also be used for:

  • A shortfall between the Local Housing Allowance Rate and your actual rent
  • A shortfall as a result of a non-dependant deduction
  • A shortfall due to the effect of the benefit cap
  • A shortfall due to under occupancy restrictions
  • Reduction in entitlement due to a change in circumstance

Who would qualify?

Discretionary housing payments can only be paid to people suffering exceptional hardship or with exceptional circumstances. The following must also apply: 

  • The claimant must be entitled to Housing Benefit or Housing Costs through Universal Credit. 
  • They must require further help with housing costs. 
  • The Council must have sufficient funds available to cover the cost. 

We cannot make a payment for:

  • Service charges. 
  • Charges for water or sewerage services. 
  • Rent where you only qualify for council tax reduction
  • To cover any shortfall in Housing Benefit due to an overpayment being recovered. 

How are payments made?

Payments awarded to help with rent can be paid either to you or your landlord. 

How to apply

You will need to complete a discretionary housing payment application form.

Discretionary housing payment application form (PDF, 517KB)