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We will only be able to accept a new claim for Housing Benefits if you:

  • are of pensionable age (if you are a couple, both of you must be of pensionable age) 

  • live in exempt accommodation (that is from a charity or housing association and receive care or support as part of your rent)

  • have been placed in temporary housing by the council.

If you don't fall into one of these groups you will need to make a claim for Universal Credit for help with your housing costs (rent payments).

You can claim the benefit if you:

  • pay rent

  • are on a low income

  • have savings of less than £16,000 (unless you receive Guaranteed Pension Credit).

You can claim if you are employed (full or part-time), self-employed, unemployed, retired or disabled.

You can claim as a single person or as part of a couple. A couple is two people who are married or living together as if they are married, or in a civil partnership or living together as if in a civil partnership.

Some students and people who have come to live here from abroad can also claim.

Evidence of identity must be provided for you and any partner on all new claims made.

How do I apply?

You should make your Housing Benefit and or/Council Tax support claim directly to us, using the form below.

Apply for Housing Benefit/Council Tax Support

The form includes guidance on how to complete your claim and a list of the documents you need to give us to support your claim. We will accept electronic evidence via digital photos or scanned images. You can upload these directly to your claim form or email them to

To support your claim, you can print out any of the following forms which, once completed, can be uploaded to your claim or sent to us via email.

Need help with your claim?

If you need help making your claim online, please call us on 01480 388308 and our advisers will help you with any questions you may have.

Can you backdate my claim?

We can award help from an earlier date provided you have a good reason for not making a claim sooner.

Not knowing about Housing Benefits or not filling in the form when first asked to claim are not good reasons. You must tell us of other things which may have stopped you from claiming sooner.

If you are of working age, we can backdate your claim up to one month. If you are of state pension credit age, we can backdate your claim up to three calendar months, depending on your circumstances.

View Backdating Your Housing Benefit for more information.

Other benefits

We deal with Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support. All other benefit enquiries are dealt with by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).