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Is your current housing unaffordable?

If your rent or mortgage is unaffordable you may be entitled to help with your housing costs.

If you rent through social housing you may be entitled to Housing Benefit. If you rent privately you may be entitled to Local Housing Allowance. Housing Benefit and Local Housing Allowance are both payable to people who are either unemployed or on a low wage. The amount of benefit you are entitled to depends on your individual circumstances: income, how many people are living in the property and savings.

The maximum Local Housing Allowance payable for a property depends on the number of bedrooms, the number of people in the household and when the tenancy starts or when benefit is first claimed. The Local Housing Allowance rates are reviewed every month and may differ from previous months.

To check if you may be entitled to help with housing costs for a rented property or the Local Housing Allowance Rates visit our Housing Benefits section or to make a claim call for a claim form on 01296 585618.

If you have a mortgage and are unemployed you may be entitled to help with housing costs through the DWP by way of Supported Mortgage Interest payments (SMI).

This is payable depending on the type of benefit you are receiving and how long you have been receiving it. Visit for more information or contact us on (01296) 585168.

The amount of SMI payable is dependant on the amount you have borrowed (usually up to £200,000 and certain improvements only) and is payable on the interest part of your mortgage only. The rate of payment varies from time to time and is currently set at 3.63%. It is not based on the rate of interest you actually pay to your lender.

Contact the Housing Debt Advice Team for further help on (01296) 585168.

Date Updated: 15/02/13

Contact information


01296 585168