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    • IceAngel
    • By IceAngel 19th May 17, 11:37 AM
    • 14Posts
    • 23Thanks
    IceAngel
    How to claim Housing Benefit
    • #1
    • 19th May 17, 11:37 AM
    How to claim Housing Benefit 19th May 17 at 11:37 AM
    Can anyone advise on how I apply for Housing Benefit?

    I have had to return to the UK after a short period abroad, due to a relationship breakdown. My children and I are currently staying with my parents, but this is not a long-term solution. I currently have no income although I am applying for every job I can.

    I know that I need to be earning something to even be considered by a landlord but I will need housing benefit for a while and I have no idea how to apply, or when. Do I need to be in a house before I can apply or can I do it once I have a tenancy agreed? How do I get a tenancy agreed if I haven't got it?

    It feels like a chicken and egg situation as I have no idea what I'm doing. Any advice would be massively appreciated.
Page 1
    • Penitent
    • By Penitent 19th May 17, 12:15 PM
    • 1,082 Posts
    • 2,932 Thanks
    Penitent
    • #2
    • 19th May 17, 12:15 PM
    • #2
    • 19th May 17, 12:15 PM
    If you're able to stay with your parents a bit longer, you'd be better to wait until you get a job. This will not only make it easier to find a property (having no income at all and needing HB will make it very difficult to find a LL who'll accept you), it will also allow you to choose a property that's better located for getting to work. If you get the property before the job, you might end up with an awkward commute.
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 19th May 17, 12:45 PM
    • 10,454 Posts
    • 12,369 Thanks
    pmlindyloo
    • #3
    • 19th May 17, 12:45 PM
    • #3
    • 19th May 17, 12:45 PM
    Can anyone advise on how I apply for Housing Benefit?

    I have had to return to the UK after a short period abroad, due to a relationship breakdown. My children and I are currently staying with my parents, but this is not a long-term solution. I currently have no income although I am applying for every job I can.

    I know that I need to be earning something to even be considered by a landlord but I will need housing benefit for a while and I have no idea how to apply, or when. Do I need to be in a house before I can apply or can I do it once I have a tenancy agreed? How do I get a tenancy agreed if I haven't got it?

    It feels like a chicken and egg situation as I have no idea what I'm doing. Any advice would be massively appreciated.
    Originally posted by IceAngel
    How long were you abroad for? When did you return to the UK?

    It may be that you have to meet the habitual resident test before you can be awarded HB. Have you applied for any other benefits?

    Even though you are living with your parents you can still put in an application for JSA or Income Support (depending on the age of your children and your savings/capital), child benefit and child tax credits.

    If you are awarded a means tested benefit like JSA or Income Support this would give you an automatic entitlement to housing benefit fit for your circumstances.

    You cannot claim HB without a tenancy agreement so you would have to have the finances for the deposit, first month's rent, credit checks and references.

    Finding a property whilst on benefits may not be easy unless your parents could act as a guarantor or you pay 6 months rent up front. You might find difficulty with finding accommodation through a letting agency if you are on benefits so look at your local newspapers/ask friends/extended family etc.

    You could also register with the council to go on the housing register.

    Might be a good idea to get started on applying for the aforementioned benefits if you think you are eligible before you look for accommodation.

    Perhaps a visit to your local CAB might be a good option for further support.
    • IceAngel
    • By IceAngel 19th May 17, 12:52 PM
    • 14 Posts
    • 23 Thanks
    IceAngel
    • #4
    • 19th May 17, 12:52 PM
    • #4
    • 19th May 17, 12:52 PM
    Thanks both.

    I have already applied for JSA and am awaiting a decision on the HRT. The fact that I am waiting for the council to find my children school places won't help with that. I went abroad last July, so only ten months ago and continued paying NI while away.

    Despite my circumstances (fleeing DV and overcrowding at my parents, plus a very remote location that will make getting to work extremely difficult), we are not considered a priority. In all honesty, my transport options are so limited that finding more accessible housing is very important.

    I have been to the CAB and the Government guidelines are so vague that even they and Shelter are unable to provide any answers.

    I have an appointment with Women's Aid next week but am getting frustrated and depressed at the seemingly impossibility of getting any information that means I can plan ahead. Let alone having to wait a month (assuming I meet the HRT requirements) to get any money at all. Without my parents, we would be homeless and starving.

    I already have mental health problems and this is close to tipping me over the edge.
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 19th May 17, 1:02 PM
    • 10,454 Posts
    • 12,369 Thanks
    pmlindyloo
    • #5
    • 19th May 17, 1:02 PM
    • #5
    • 19th May 17, 1:02 PM
    Have you applied for child tax credits?

    According to this you should be eligible

    https://www.gov.uk/tax-credits-if-moving-country-or-travelling/moving-to-the-uk
    • IceAngel
    • By IceAngel 19th May 17, 1:23 PM
    • 14 Posts
    • 23 Thanks
    IceAngel
    • #6
    • 19th May 17, 1:23 PM
    • #6
    • 19th May 17, 1:23 PM
    I'm waiting for the form to arrive. It'll take about 2 weeks then I have to wait for the assessment to be completed.
    • danielanthony
    • By danielanthony 19th May 17, 2:37 PM
    • 508 Posts
    • 328 Thanks
    danielanthony
    • #7
    • 19th May 17, 2:37 PM
    • #7
    • 19th May 17, 2:37 PM
    You should consider claiming maintenance from the children's father, even if he lives abroad you may be able to claim via REMO. Is it possible for your parents to look after the children whilst you work?
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