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Housing Benefit (Northern Ireland) - How do I claim Housing Benefit?

Find out more about Housing Benefit (Northern Ireland).

How do I claim Housing Benefit?

If you are making a claim for Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, or Pension Credit you will be given a claim form at the same time.

Owner-occupiers

You can get a claim form for help with your rates by contacting Land and Property Services:
Telephone: 0300 200 7802
E-mail: housingbenefit.rating@lpsni.gov.uk
Download a claim form from the NI Direct website (link opens in a new window)

Renters

You can get a claim form by contacting the Housing Executive:
Telephone: 03448 920 902
Download a claim form from the Housing Executive website (link opens in a new window)
Or visit your local Housing Executive office to collect one.

Rapid reclaims

To make a claim, you may be able to fill in a shortened form known as a 'rapid reclaim'. To fill in a rapid reclaim, you must have made a claim for Income Support or income-based Jobseeker's Allowance before, within the last 26 weeks. You must also be claiming this benefit again and your circumstances must not have changed since your last claim.

What documents will I need to claim Housing Benefit?

When you claim Housing Benefit, you must give your national insurance number and evidence of who you are, for example, a birth certificate or driving licence. You also need to give evidence that you must pay the rent, for example, your rent book or tenancy agreement. If you are not claiming benefits like Income Support, you must give evidence of your income and savings, for example, bank statements or pay slips.

When will my Housing Benefit claim begin?

If you download the form, you should also contact them immediately on the telephone to let them know that you are going to make a claim. The date of your phone call may be used to decide when your right to Housing Benefit, if any, will start.

Housing Benefit can be backdated for up to one month if you would have been entitled to it earlier. You have to show a good reason for not claiming sooner. Request this when claiming.

If you or your partner are over Pension Credit age and you are not getting Income Support or income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, your claim can be backdated for up to three months. It does not matter why your claim is late. Request this when claiming.

Change of circumstances

You must report changes in your circumstances which might affect your entitlement to this benefit.

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