How to claim Universal Credit or Housing Benefit

If you need help with your housing costs, you should apply for Universal Credit. If you are not eligible, you may be able to claim Housing Benefit.

Universal Credit

Universal Credit is a monthly payment to help with you living costs. It has replaced the following benefits for most people:

  • Housing Benefit
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • child tax credit
  • working tax credit
  • Income Support

You may be able to claim Universal Credit if you’re on a low income or not working. Find out if you’re eligible for Universal Credit on the GOV.UK website.

Housing Benefit

You may be eligible for Housing Benefit if you receive any of the following benefits:

  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • child tax credit
  • working tax credit
  • Income Support

You may be eligible if you are of pensionable age or if you have two dependant children. You can find out when you will be eligible for your pension on the GOV.UK website.

You may also be eligible for Housing Benefit if you live in:

  • temporary accommodation provided by us
  • a property owned by a housing association, registered charity or not-for-profit organisation which provides you with support as part of your tenancy agreement
  • a hostel
  • a domestic violence refuge

How to apply for Housing Benefit

If you’re not eligible for Universal Credit, you might be able to claim Housing Benefit.

To apply for Housing Benefit, you’ll need to login to or register for MyAccount.

It should take you around five minutes to apply. We’ll ask you for evidence of your household and income as you progress through the form. Once you’ve completed the form, we’ll contact you within 12 working days.

sign into MyAccount to apply for Housing Benefit

Evidence you need to provide during your application

We usually need to see:

  • proof of identity for you and your partner, such as a driving licence or passport
  • proof of national insurance number for you and your partner, such as a national insurance card, P45, P60 or a payslip
  • proof of identity for all other household members  such as a birth certificate, driving licence or passport
  • proof of all income you, your partner and all household members receive such as Child Support Agency letters, payslips or letters about student finance
  • proof of all benefits you, your partner and all household members receive such as a recent award letter
  • proof of capital (investments, properties and savings) for you and your partner – two months’ bank statements for all accounts held or jointly held including statements for inactive bank accounts
  • proof of Child Benefit for all children in the household – a recent Child Benefit award letter or recent bank statement showing Child Benefit payments
  • proof of your agreement to pay rent – your tenancy agreement

Council Tax support

If you’re eligible for Universal Credit or Housing Benefit, you may be able to claim Council Tax support.