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Discretionary Housing Payments

Discretionary Housing Payments can help people with their housing costs when their Housing Benefit or Universal Credit payments still leave them struggling to pay their rent.

Am I eligible?

You must be getting Housing Benefit or Universal Credit which includes an element for housing costs towards a rental liability to apply. 

We cannot help with all rent payments. For example, we cannot provide a Discretionary Housing Payment if meals, heating, lighting, hot water or water rates are included in your rent.


How to apply

If you receive Housing Benefit

You will need to download, save and complete our application for a Discretionary Housing Payment PDF form. 

Application for a Discretionary Housing Payment form (PDF) [613KB]

You then need to use our benefits general form to upload your completed PDF and submit your application.

Submit your DHP application

If you receive Universal Credit

Complete the Discretionary Housing Payment form for Universal Credit claimants


What happens next?

When we look at your application we will assess:

  • if you can afford to pay the shortfall between the benefit and the rent
  • if you are you taking steps to improve the situation
  • if it is reasonable to expect you to move or if a payment would help you to move

We will then prioritise payments to people in priority groups including:

  • disabled people and vulnerable adults
  • foster carers
  • families where a payment will help safeguard children
  • where there have been emergency circumstances
  • families affected by the Benefit Cap
  • tenants faced with eviction or homelessness

Each case will be treated strictly on its merits and all claimants will be treated equally and fairly. More information can be found in our Discretionary Housing Payment Policy.

You can only receive Discretionary Housing Payments if you have been awarded Housing Benefit or the housing cost element of Universal Credit.

We cannot provide Discretionary Housing Payments to duplicate any Housing Benefit or housing cost that you have already received but did not use to cover the cost of your housing.


Further help

If you need further help or advice contact us.

Contact us about Housing Benefits and Council Tax Support