Who can claim housing benefit

If you’re on a low income and pay rent for the property you live in, you may be able to get housing benefit to help with rent. You can apply for housing benefit, or continue to claim housing benefit, if one of the following applies to you:

  • have more than 2 children 
  • live in supported accommodation 
  • live in temporary accommodation provided by a Council
  • are of Pension Credit age
  • are a severely disabled person
  • live in the Kentish Town Job Plus Centre area* 

*Universal Credit will be available in the Kentish Town area from December 2018. Until then, you should claim housing benefit.

If nothing in the above list applies to you, please apply for Universal Credit instead.

If something in the list does apply, please continue to the next section where you can apply for housing benefits. 

What you’ll get

Apply for housing benefit

Additional forms

In addition to your application, you may need to complete one or more of these forms if you or your partner:

  • are a student (PDF)
  • are self-employed (PDF)
  • a company director (PDF)
  • own a property, and are claiming Housing Benefit (PDF)
  • have childcare costs (PDF)
  • have asked us to pay your landlord and we are able to, both you and your landlord must complete the landlord payment form (PDF)

Apply for housing benefit

If you don’t want to apply online, you can print an application form.

Providing photographs or scans of documents when you complete your application will speed up the process. Information that cannot be clearly read will cause delays.

If your claim is accepted, you will usually be paid from the first Monday after we receive it (with extra payment making up for any time passed since this date).
If any of the details you give us change, please tell us immediately.

You can view and manage your benefits on your Camden Account

Send us your documents

If you do not have all your supporting documents right now, you can send them to within 1 month of submitting the form. If you do not provide all evidence within 1 month, you might not be entitled to benefit or a reduction.

Email your documents:
You can email your documents to benefits@camden.gov.uk
Please put your claim reference number at the start of the subject heading in your email. 

Post your documents:
Benefits Service, 
Camden Town Hall, 
Judd Street, 
London. WC1H 8NJ. 

Drop off your documents in person (you do not need to book an appointment): 
Camden Council,
5 Pancras Square, 
Kings Cross, 
London. N1C 4AG.

Private tenants

If you rent privately, your housing benefit will be based on the number of bedrooms your household needs. This is called local housing allowance.

How much you get is based on:

Exception

If you’ve been receiving housing benefit since before 7 April 2008, the local housing allowance bedroom limit will only apply if you:

  • change address
  • have a break in your claim for Housing Benefit

Overnight care

If you or your partner requires an overnight carer, your local housing allowance will include an additional bedroom for that carer.

Contact us to tell us if you or your partner have an overnight carer.

How you're paid

Council tenants

We will pay your housing benefit into your rent account (you will not receive the money)

Private tenants

We will pay your housing benefit into your bank or building society account.

If you’re away from home temporarily

If you’re away from your home for more than 4 weeks, you should contact us before you go. You must intend to return to the property and you must not charge somebody else rent for living in your accommodation whilst you are away.

If you leave the UK for more than 4 weeks, you will not be entitled to housing benefit while you are absent. 
If you remain within the UK you may still be entitled to housing benefit for up to 13 weeks. 

There are some exceptions:

Hospital
If you go into hospital we can pay your benefit for up to 52 weeks if you’re expected to return home within that time, although the amount of benefit we can pay you may decrease after 6 weeks.

Prison
If you’re in prison as a remand prisoner you can still receive benefit for up to 52 weeks. If you’re sentenced and committed to prison during this time, your housing benefit will stop unless your sentence is for 13 weeks or less.

Fleeing domestic violence
It’s possible for housing benefit to be paid for up to 52 weeks if you have had to leave your home because of domestic violence. If you’re in a refuge you can ask one of the workers to contact us, even if the refuge is not in Camden. We will not tell your refuge address to anyone.