A Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) may be made when Housing Benefit or Universal Credit does not provide enough money to pay your rent. DHPs are not part of the normal Housing Benefit or Universal Credit schemes but are payments that may be made where extra financial support is needed.
You may be entitled to a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) if you don't get full Housing Benefit and you're still paying something towards your rent.
If you think you may qualify for extra help, you must complete a DHP application form. We'll look at your income and expenditure and award you a payment if we believe you need further help to pay your housing costs. We won't be able to pay you to cover the cost of things included in your rent, like fuel, water or food charges.
Who can claim it?
To qualify you must be entitled to some Housing Benefit or Housing Element of Universal Credit, but if you get full benefit then you won't receive any more help. If you don't qualify for/receive Housing Benefit or the Housing Element of Universal Credit, then you won't be able to apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment.
What information do we need?
You must tell us why you think you need extra help to meet your housing costs. Please include information such as:
- Any disabilities or illnesses you or a member of your family may have
- How your disability or illness may affect you financially (for example, extra costs) or prevent you from moving
- Income and spending, including debts
- Any change in your circumstances which makes it more difficult for you to meet the shortfall
- What would happen if you lost your home
- Any other special circumstances
We may ask to see any reasonable evidence to support your claim. Please give us all the information which will help your case.
How is it assessed?
We look at each case individually based on each person's circumstances. We'll write to you to tell you whether or not your claim has been successful. We'll tell you how much you'll get and how long it will last for. We can only make the payment for a set period, but you can reapply when the payment stops.
How will it be paid?
We will pay it with your Housing Benefit, if you receive this, or with separate payments if you're receive Universal Credit. It may be paid to you or to your landlord.
What if you disagree with our decision?
You don't have any right of appeal if we turn down your claim but you can ask us to look at the decision again. This is called a review.
Changes you must tell us about
You must tell us about anything you think might affect your entitlement to Discretionary Housing Payments or your entitlement to Housing Benefit. You must do this within 1 month of the change taking place.
Need to rent but can't afford the deposit?
Help with a cash deposit from the Bond Board - a Bond is a written guarantee that takes place of a cash deposit. It will pay the landlord if there are rent arrears or damage at the end of a tenancy.