Change of circumstances

Housing Benefit helps you to pay your rent if you are on a low income. You can claim whether you are in full time work or get social security benefits.The amount of housing benefit you will get depends on:

  • how much money you have coming in
  • your personal circumstances and the amount of rent you have to pay
  • the amount of savings you have (more than £16,000 will normally disqualify you)

Try our benefits calculator to see what help you can get.

If your circumstances change you must notify us immediately (within one calendar month) of any changes in your circumstances which may affect your benefit entitlement. You can use our online form to report your change of circumstances.

Reporting a change of circumstances

Where you are entitled to Housing Benefit you must notify this office immediately (within one calendar month) in writing of any changes in your circumstances which may affect your benefit entitlement (see examples below). Please note that if you delay (over one calendar month) in notifying us of a change that may increase your housing benefit you will not get your increased benefit backdated. In other words, the date we are notified of the change will be treated as the effective date that the change of circumstance occurred. Failure to notify us of change that will reduce your benefit will be backdated to the date of the change and you may have an overpayment which you will have to repay. Examples of relevant changes of circumstances are:

  • if you move
  • if someone in your household, including yourself and partner, starts or ceases to receive income support
  • if your rent increases or decreases
  • if any rent you receive from a sub-tenant increases or decreases
  • if someone enters or leaves your household (ie someone who stays longer than two weeks)
  • if the circumstances of someone in the household changes, eg. starts work, leaves school, gets married etc
  • if you have baby
  • if your child reaches the age of 18
  • if the income of anyone in the household changes in any way, including wage increases, pension increases

The back of your benefit entitlement notice provides space for you to tell us of a change in your circumstances or you can use the form on this website.

If you leave your property for a period of time you may not continue to qualify for benefits - please read our absence from home information.

If you go into hospital for a period less than 52 weeks you will not lose benefit. If you or your partner are in hospital for a period exceeding 52 weeks you must contact the Benefit Office as benefit will be down rated.

This list does not cover every change but you should report all changes because it may affect entitlement to Housing Benefit/Council Tax support. This is important because any overpayment will need to be paid back to the authority.