UK Housing Benefit: What You Need to Know
It is a common knowledge that many are struggling to make ends meet at this time. To address this issue and provide practical succor to families, housing benefit was established by the government to help low income earners who are having trouble paying living expenses. Housing benefits is mainly for the payment of rent. Recently, enabling law was reviewed to help with the implementation of this noble idea.
The amendment to housing benefits introduced in the Welfare Reform Act 2012 and which came into effect in April 2013 have made changes to the requirement for social housing tenants who desire to exchange their properties. This housing Welfare Reform has empowered people to seek mutual exchanges in lower rent areas which tend to be estates areas of the United Kingdom. This Welfare Reform Act also provide nearly all benefits lumped together which will include child tax credit, child benefit, and, housing benefit, to mention a few. However, the housing benefit doesn’t include people who have savings of over £16,000. These people include those who are 60 or a little over 60 and receiving the “guaranteed credit” housing benefit as part of their pension.
However, students who are undergoing full time studies are eligible. In case such students are minor or are disabled, they will be considered for the benefits. This does not include anyone who is under asylum or on sponsorship in the UK. The most cheering news is that the housing benefit will not lead to any conflict with other benefits you already got. Whatever benefits you have had will not have any negative effect on how much you receive for rent payment support.
Since the housing benefits is for help paying rent, if you are qualified, you can easily access it to offset your rent bill. Before you are given any amount, the local council will consider various factors in deciding the total of eligible rent benefit you will get. This could be based upon your personal finance like savings, income, age, and how many people are living in your home including their income, ages, and disabilities. If you have partners, that will also be considered.
After all these consideration and fact finding, the council will appraise the amount of rent and decide if it is appropriate for the area that you are living in, the kind of home you are living in, and if the size of the home is suitable for you and your family. Other aspects that will be considered are those of services like lifts, and communal laundry services. Charges for these services will be taken into consideration when deciding the housing benefits. All these information must be provided when seeking help for paying rent. So, you must have them ready beforehand.
In addition, bear in mind that the council will not consider any charges for things like heat, cooking, water, groceries, or lighting for help paying rent. Running charges for fuel will not be recognized too by the councils.
When you meet all the requirements and you are dully eligible, the housing benefit will be deposited directly to your rent account. If you are not living in local area allowance vicinity, your payment can be made to either bank account, by check or to the landlord.
The housing benefits forms can be filled out during the same time you are looking for income support, pension credit, employment and support allowance, and jobseeker’s allowance. By doing this, you may be able to access all options available to you.