Housing Benefit Payments

Local Housing allowance is usually paid direct to the claimant. Payments will only be made directly to the landlord if:

  • We consider that a tenant is unlikely to pay their rent
  • We think that a tenant cannot handle their own financial affairs
  • We believe that paying the landlord direct will help the tenant secure or retain the tenancy
  • Where a tenant is more than 8 weeks in arrears with their rent (proof of these arrears should be provided)

Please follow this link for Local Housing Allowance Rates

If your tenant has fallen into arrears with their rent and you have requested that Housing Benefit payments are changed to landlord direct, we have set procedures to follow before deciding whether to make the change. These procedures can take between 2-6 weeks to complete depending on the speed and detail of the response from your tenant. During this time the claim will be suspended and no payments will be made to either tenant or landlord.

The procedure is as follows:

  • Landlord provides evidence to the Housing Benefit department that the tenant is either in arrears with rent or at risk of becoming in arrears
  • Your tenant is contacted and told you have requested direct payments. We ask for their response within 28 days
  • If the tenant agrees that they are in arrears or are having difficulty meeting their payments we will normally change payments to go direct to the landlord
  • If the tenant disputes the arrears we will have to make a decision on the evidence provided by both parties
  • If the tenant does not respond to our letter we will visit the property to confirm that they are still in residence.


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