Housing Benefit information for landlords

Tenants on a low income may be eligible for help with their housing costs depending on the individual household circumstances. This may be Housing Benefit which is administrated by us or Universal Credit which is delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). Permission from your tenant must be provided by Housing Benefit or DWP to discuss any part of their claims with you, including if an application has been made.

Housing Benefit can still be claimed by tenants who -

  • are of State Pension age
  • live in temporary accommodation
  • live in accommodation where care and support is provided as part of living in the home
  • have three or more dependent children living with them, as long as they have received Universal Credit within the last six months

If none of the above applies to your tenant, help for their housing costs will be included within the housing element of Universal Credit and you need to contact DWP for further information.

Visit our Universal Credit page

Alternatively, access GOV.UK for further information

What to do if your tenant can claim, or is already in receipt of Housing Benefit

Your tenant may lose out on Housing Benefit if they delay claiming or reporting a change in circumstance that increases their entitlement.

Your tenant may not be entitled to Housing Benefit if the following applies -

  • they are a close relation and reside with you
  • you are their employer
  • if the council consider the tenancy was created to take advantage of the Housing Benefit scheme
  • the tenancy is not commercial
  • where occupation of the property is a condition of employment
  • you or the agent do not have the right to grant occupation

When a tenant makes a claim for Housing Benefit they will need to provide evidence of the amount of rent charged. This can be in the form of a tenancy agreement, you can provide a letter or complete a landlord declaration form.

Payments of Housing Benefit

Payments are usually made directly to the tenant however there are some circumstances where the payments can go directly to the landlord, if you are a social sector landlord -

  • at the tenants request
  • if your tenant is in rent arrears of eight weeks or more
  • you believe the tenant is unable to manage their financial affairs

Email - HS-HousingbenefitsHsgAssoc@hullcc.gov.uk with any appropriate evidence

If you are a private landlord there are also some circumstances where you can receive the payments directly, these are -

  • at the tenants request
  • if your tenant is in rent arrears of eight weeks or more
  • the council believes it is in the best interest of the tenant
  • where your tenant is vulnerable and would struggle to manage their financial affairs
  • you are considering enforcement action (eviction or notice of seeking possession) and you believe that the arrears are partly due to non payment of Housing Benefit

If evidence is provided, you or your tenant can request payments to be made directly to you. The final decision will be made by a benefits officer who may suspend a tenant's Housing Benefit payments whilst the decision is being made.

If you are currently receiving payments from us, you only need to complete a new DWP form under the following circumstances -

  • your company changes from a Trading Company to a Limited Company
  • you transfer from joint to single ownership

For a private landlord to request direct payments you must complete and return the form below.

Change in circumstances

Where you are receiving the payments we notify you of any change in circumstances that affect your tenant's entitlement.

If your tenant is receiving Housing Benefit and has a change in circumstances that you are aware of, you should report it to us as you may be liable to repay any overpayments.

You should notify us immediately in writing of any other change in your circumstances, for example -

  • change of address
  • change of bank account details
  • change of trading company name
  • you no longer wish to receive payments

To report any change of circumstances email benefitssr@hullcc.gov.uk with as much detail as possible.

Failure to complete a direct payment agreement form (DPA) or notify changes in writing may result in delayed or non payment of any Housing Benefit that is awarded.

Visit our page for further information about overpayments for landlords