You may be able to get help with your rent if you are on a low income or getting certain benefits.
You can no longer claim Housing Benefit within Dumfries and Galloway unless you meet certain criteria.
Universal Credit Full Service launched in Dumfries and Galloway on 16/05/2018. This means that anyone seeking assistance with their rent can no longer claim Housing Benefit, and must instead claim Universal Credit , unless they meet one of the exceptions.
Changes to Housing Benefit eligibility for mixed age couples from 15 May 2019
A mixed age couple is where one party of the couple is over Pension Credit qualifying age and the other under that age.
From 15 May 2019, if you're in a mixed age couple you'll only be eligible to start getting Housing Benefit if one of you started claiming Housing Benefit or Pension Credit (for you as a couple) before 15 May 2019.
If you're not already getting Housing Benefit on 14 May 2019, you can backdate your claim. You could still be eligible to get Housing Benefit. You can ask for your claim to be backdated to 14 May or before. You'll need to apply by 13 August 2019 to do this.
You can apply for Universal Credit instead if you're still not eligible.
If you already get Housing Benefit and you're in a mixed age couple
You'll continue to get Housing Benefit after 15 May 2019. If your entitlement stops for any reason, for example your circumstances change, you cannot start getting it again until you and your partner are eligible under the new rules.
If you are of pension age already getting Housing Benefit and you're single
From 15 May 2019, you'll stop getting Housing Benefit if you start living with a partner who is under State Pension age. You can start getting it again when your partner reaches State Pension age.
Working Age couples where one member reaches State Pension Credit age
You'll stop getting Housing Benefit and should apply for Universal Credit instead. You can start getting Housing Benefit again when your partner also reaches State Pension age.
You may be able to get help if:
- you are the person responsible for paying the rent on a low income
- you have savings of less than £16,000
- you are receiving income support, Jobseeker's Allowance or Pension Credits
- you are a student with special circumstances
Council Tax Reduction
Dumfries and Galloway Council are still responsible for assessing any entitlement to help with your Council Tax liability via Council Tax Reduction. You'll need to make a separate claim for any reduction in Council Tax you may be entitled to, it is not included as part of Universal Credit.
Apply for housing benefit
This application will also be your application for Council Tax Reduction if you are liable for Council Tax.
(can't apply online using mobile devices)
You'll need to provide information on:
- your identity
- any income you receive
- any savings you have
- your national insurance number
- the same information for a partner
- details of anyone else living in your house
You can also call 030 33 33 3006 or visit a Customer Service Centre to apply.
What happens next
We aim to deal with applications within 14 days of receiving all relevant information. If upon receipt of your Housing Benefit claim it is determined that you should instead claim Universal Credit, we will contact you as soon as possible.
We'll backdate payments to the Monday after you applied if you're successful.
Discretionary Housing Payments
You may be entitled to an additional Discretionary Housing Payment if you get Housing Benefit or Universal Credit, with Housing Costs included, but still find it hard to pay your rent.
Unhappy with our decision
We have a review process for housing benefit applicants who are not happy with the decision about their application.
Tell us about a change
You should always let us know if your address or circumstances change for any reason.
You can also:
- Call 030 33 33 3006
- Visit one of our Customer Service Centres
- Write to Benefits, Carruthers House, English Street, Dumfries, DG1 2HP
Depending on your situation you may also find help and support from other services. You can find out who might help you locally by using find my nearest and choosing Housing Support Outreach Services.