Housing benefit

older lady in hallway

Housing Benefit helps pay your rent if you are a tenant. Housing Benefit could not only reduce your rent but also cover some service charges like lifts and communal laundry facilities.

Can I claim it?

  • Housing Benefit is a means-tested benefit, so what you receive depends on your income and savings, who you live with, how much rent you pay and how many rooms you have in your home.
  • You won't get Housing Benefit if you have more than £16,000 in savings - unless you get the Guarantee Credit part of Pension Credit, in which case the savings limit doesn't apply.
  • If you get Guarantee Credit you may get your rent paid in full by Housing Benefit.
  • If you don't get Guarantee Credit - but have a low income and less than £16,000 in savings - you may still get some help.
  • If you own your own home, you can't claim Housing Benefit. However, you may be eligible for Support with Mortgage Interest as part of Pension Credit. See our free factsheet Pension Credit for more information.

If you're of working age and making a new claim in an area where Universal Credit has been introduced, you should claim Universal Credit to help with your rent.

Use our online benefits calculator to find out whether you could be eligible for Housing Benefit.

How much will I get?

There's no set amount of Housing Benefit - it depends on a number of factors

  • If you rent privately or from a council
  • Your household income/circumstances
  • If you have empty rooms 

Claiming benefits like Carers Allowance, Attendance Allowance, Personal Independence Payment and Disability Living Allowance can help you get more Housing Benefit.

If you get Housing Benefit and still find it difficult to pay your rent, you can apply for a discretionary housing payment. Contact your local council to ask for a claim form.

How do I claim?

If you're claiming no other benefits, contact your local council to claim. You may be able to apply in person, online, by telephone or by completing a form. You can apply for Housing Benefit at the same time as applying for Pension Credit.

If you need help with the claim, contact your local Age UK or call Age UK Advice on 0800 169 65 65.

If you're already claiming Pension Credit, contact the Pension Service.

More information about claiming benefits

opens link in new window Download our guide More money in your pocket: a guide to claiming benefits for people over pension age (PDF 3 MB)

Further information

opens link in new window Download our factsheet Housing Benefit (PDF 232 KB)

opens link in new window Download our factsheet Benefits for people under Pension Credit age (PDF 167 KB) 

We are grateful for the generous support of Dr Naim Dangoor CBE
and The Exilarch's Foundation

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Age UK Advice:
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Useful website

  • The Department for Work and Pensions is responsible for a range of benefits and services for pensioners and people planning pensions.

Useful information to download

  • The following factsheet is applicable to people over pension age.


    The following factsheet is applicable to people under pension age.
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