Discretionary Housing Payment - How do I claim a Discretionary Housing Payment?

Discretionary Housing Payment is a extra payment which can help towards housing costs.

How do I claim a Discretionary Housing Payment?

A claim for a Discretionary Housing Payment is different to a claim for Housing Benefit.

You should ask your local council how to make a claim. They may accept claims in writing, over the telephone or electronically.


Sometimes it is hard to find the page with this information on the council website. You can type into Google Search the words "(name of council)" + Discretionary Housing Payment. Different councils will have different named schemes, for example, Islington Council has a Resident Support Scheme. 

So an example would be a Google search - "Birmingham city council discretionary housing payment" - which would take you directly to that page.

What documents will I need to claim a Discretionary Housing Payment?

Each local authority will have its own claim form but the following documents will usually be required to support a claim:

  • Your most recent payslip if you are working

  • Your partner's most recent payslip (if you have a partner and they are working)

  • Bank account statements covering the last two months (and partner's)

  • Proof of any loan or credit card or hire purchase repayment agreements

  • Any letters you have received from the landlord about rent arrears

  • Proof of any expenses that are especially high

  • If you are ill, recent medical evidence.

When will my Discretionary Housing Payment claim begin?

There are no rules on backdating. It is up to your local authority whether any award will be backdated and for how long.

Change of circumstances

You are required to notify your local council of any changes of circumstances which may be relevant to you continuing to receive Discretionary Housing Payments. You will be told about the changes you should report.


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