Private sector housing

Information and advice for private sector landlords and tenants.

In this section

If your tenant makes a claim for Housing Benefit

If your tenant makes a claim for Housing Benefit, they must provide certain information, such as proof of income and savings. They will also need to provide a tenancy agreement showing that they have to pay rent to you. If this information is not given to us in time, it can delay payments of Housing Benefit.

Can I find out more about my tenant's Housing Benefit claim?

We will ask your tenant whether they are happy for us to discuss their Housing Benefit claim with you. If they agree, we can share information about their claim.

Can I let my property to a family member who is receiving Housing Benefit?

If you have a commercial tenancy agreement with a family member, they may be able to make a claim for Housing Benefit to help meet the cost of the rent.

However, we cannot pay Housing Benefit to your family member if:

  • they are a close relative and live in the same property as you
  • you are the tenant's former partner
  • you are the parent of the tenant's children

Is Housing Benefit paid directly to me?

Housing Benefit calculated using Local Housing Allowance rates is paid directly to the tenant. Your tenant will then need to make payments to you. Payments are no longer made directly to the landlord, except in certain circumstances.

We may make Housing Benefit payments directly to you if one of the following applies:

  • your tenant is in rent arrears of eight weeks or more
  • your tenant is unable to manage their finances or is unlikely to pay their rent
  • paying you directly allow your tenant to stay in the property

We consider each case individually when deciding whether to pay Housing Benefit directly to the landlord. If we decide to pay you directly, you will receive payments every four weeks in arrears. Payment will be made directly to your bank account. You can register for an account to see details of your payments.

What if my tenant's circumstances change?

Your tenant should tell us if there are any changes that affect their Housing Benefit.

If you are receiving Housing Benefit payments from a tenant, and you are aware that their circumstances have changed – for example, they have given notice that they are leaving the property – you must tell us by contacting

If you do not tell us about a change in a tenant's circumstances, we could ask you to repay an overpayment of Housing Benefit.

For information about applying for Housing Benefit, please visit our Housing Benefit page