If you are not working you should be receiving either Income Support , Employment and Support Allowance or Jobseekers Allowance. If you are not in receipt of one of these attend your local Jobcentre as soon as possible and check with an adviser which benefit would best suit you.
!! Remember to take the advisers name and date you applied and keep this information safe, as it may be needed if there is an issue in the future !!
Working Tax Credit
If you are working you may be eligible for additional income in the form of WTC. You can apply for this from HMRC.
If you are currently on a low income you may wish to consider a Crisis loan which is available from your Local Authority, if you get one (which isn’t guaranteed) you will have to pay it back.
Crisis Loans (can be known by other names depending on the Local Authority)– You will need to show that you need help with rent in advance because of an ’emergency or disaster’. If you have become homeless suddenly then you may be able to argue this is an emergency. You do not need to be getting benefits to get a crisis loan.
Disability Living Allowance / Employment and Support Allowance
If you or a family member are unwell and need help with day to day activities or are unable to work. See if you can claim one of the above. You may also be eligible for Carers Allowance. Speak to one of our benefit advisers for advice on eligibility or contact your local Jobcentre.
Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit
If you have children ensure you are receiving this and if not apply if you have not already done so. Speak to one of our benefit advisers if you have been rejected for this benefit and we may be able to help you appeal it.
If you have a low income or on one of the ‘Main Benefits’ above you will most likely be eligible for Housing Benefit to help with any Rent.
The figures of local housing allowance are different in each authority and will depend on your current income. www.london.gov.uk/rents has a London Rents Map that shows average private sector rents for different types of home across London the Outer rate. Whilst www.gov.uk/housing-benefit/what-youll-get will find your local housing allowance rate by postcode or authority.
Discretionary Housing Payments
If you are in receipt of Housing Benefit and you are getting the maximum according to the LHA but still have a short fall, you may be eligible for DHP. You can pick up a form from your Local Authority and should fill it in with the required details and shortfall. this includes “Bedroom Tax” shortfalls as well as money to tide you over until you can move to a smaller / cheaper property. Some councils can also help for a Deposit or Rent Advance through this.Benefit Types Overview by Arfan Bhatti