What help can I get?

Housing and Council Tax Reductions are available to persons on low or no income, to help with paying their rent and/or council tax.

You do not have to be on Income Support or Job Seeker's Allowance to make a claim for Housing Benefit or a Council Tax Reduction. You can claim if you, or your partner, are in full time work, are receiving a pension, other state benefits or even have no income at all.


You will not be able to get Housing Benefit or a Council Tax Reduction if:

  • you are not a householder (you are not liable to pay rent or Council Tax; or you are liable to pay rent and Council Tax to a close relative living with you in your accommodation)
  • you have more than £16,000 in savings - unless you are receiving Pension Credit Guarantee. This includes cash at home, money in bank/building society accounts, stocks and shares, premium bonds and property, other than the property you are living in.
  • from 6th December 2017 if you are making a new claim for help with your rent, you will need to claim Universal Credit if you are of working age. Exceptions to this is if you have more than 2 children in your household or live in supported accommodation. Please contact the DWP regarding this on 0345 6004272. You can also find out how much you may be entitled to by accessing gov.uk. Please note that to claim Council Tax Support you will still need to apply to the Council.
  • your status in the UK excludes you from receiving public funds. If you have recently come from abroad you will normally need to demonstrate that you have the right to stay in this country. You will also have to satisfy the habitual residency test before we can pay you any benefit
  • you are a full time student - unless you are a full time student who is also:
    a lone parent; disabled; under 19 following a further (not higher) course; state pension credit age.

How much Housing Benefit/Council Tax Reduction should you get?

How much benefit you can get depends on how much money you have coming in and any savings. It also depends on the number of people living with you in your home, their ages and the amount of money they receive.

It also depends on the type of accommodation you are living in and whether you are renting from a private landlord, the council or a Housing Association.

The amount we can pay you may be restricted. For example:

  • if you have other adults living with you in your household you may get less benefit
  • if you are a single person under 35 years or a private tenant and your rent is high the
    amount we can pay you may be restricted.

If you would like further information about this you should use the online Council Tax Support and Housing Benefit Calculator or contact us. You can apply for Housing Benefit or Council Tax reduction here

Fast tracking your benefit claim

If you visit the pdf icon Council Offices in Welwyn Garden City [237KB] to submit a new claim for Benefit, and bring all the supporting evidence needed to assess your claim, we will process your claim whilst you wait, or within 24 hours of your visit.

All documentation must be original, we cannot accept photocopies.


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