Housing Benefit

You can only claim Housing Benefit if you are responsible for paying rent in the property you live in and you have reached state pension age. You may still be able to make a claim for Housing Benefit if you are working age and you:

  • Live in temporary homeless accommodation, a local authority hostel or a refuge for victims of domestic violence, or
  • Live in accommodation where you are provided with support, care or supervision (supported accommodation) by or on behalf of your landlord.

Your landlord should be able to tell you if you live in one of the property types listed above. 

If you do not fall into one of the above categories and need help with your housing costs, you should make an application for Universal Credit.

If you already receive Housing Benefit and you are working age, your award will continue until you have a change of circumstances that means you are no longer entitled, or you claim Universal Credit. The Department for Work and Pensions will contact you directly to tell you if you need to change from Housing Benefit to Universal Credit (known as ‘managed migration’).

If you have applied for, or are getting, Universal Credit, and you are liable to pay Council Tax in Aberdeen, you should apply straight away for Council Tax Reduction, if you have not already done so. If you already get the Universal Credit Housing Costs Element, you can still apply to the council for a Discretionary Housing Payment if you need further help with your rent.

To qualify for Housing Benefit, you must be:

  • on a low income, whether benefits or low paid work
  • you (and your partner) don't have more than £16,000 capital or savings, unless you are getting Pension Credit (Guarantee Credit)

Housing Benefit is a 'means tested' benefit - different awards will be granted depending on your personal circumstances.

We will need to see evidence of all of your income and savings in order to complete the calculation. Other adults resident in the property are expected to contribute towards the rent, therefore your benefit may be reduced in order to accommodate this.

Home visits can be arranged for the elderly or disabled. 

Benefits calculator

The Turn2us website offers help for you if you are unemployed and looking for work, on a low income, retired, bringing up children, ill, have a disability or care for someone. They have a benefits calculator to work out how much you could claim.

How to apply for Housing Benefit

Download copies of the relevant form/s from the links below:

Change in circumstances

You must tell us about any changes which affect your Housing Benefit. 

You should tell us about any changes as soon as possible. If you don't tell us promptly, you may be paid too much Housing Benefit and have to pay it back, or you may lose money that you are entitled to.

Housing Benefit backdating

It may be possible to backdate your claim for Housing Benefit and pay it from an earlier date if you have a good reason for not claiming earlier (for example, if you have been in hospital before claiming). Housing Benefit can be backdated for up to three months if you are of pensionable age and one month if you are younger than this. If you feel you have good cause for not claiming earlier, immediately request, in writing, a backdate confirming why you could not claim earlier. Please send the request to:

Revenues and Benefits Office,
Business Hub16,
Marischal College,
Broad Street,
AB10 1AB


If you think your Housing Benefit decision might be wrong

If you want an explanation or think the decision we have made about your Housing Benefit is wrong, you must contact us within one month of the date of the decision. These are the steps you can take: 

1) Ask us to explain our decision 

Telephone or write to us within one month of the date of the decision and we will explain how we have reached our decision. An explanation may assist you in deciding whether you want to request a reconsideration or appeal.. 

2) Ask for a reconsideration of the decision 

This request should be in writing, giving the reasons you think the decision is wrong and be signed by you. 
We will reconsider the decision and write to you as soon as possible. If the decision is in your favour the dispute will come to an end. If the decision cannot be changed in your favour, our letter will explain why and what you can do next if you remain dissatisfied.

3) Appeal against Housing Benefit decision 
An appeal must be made in writing, and signed by you. It should give the reasons for the appeal and be forwarded to :

Revenues and Benefits,
Business Hub 16, Third Floor West, 
Marischal College,
Broad Street,
Aberdeen, AB10 1AB

or email benefits@aberdeencity.gov.uk

The decision will be reconsidered and if changed in your favour the dispute will come to an end. If the decision cannot be changed in your favour, it may be forwarded to the Tribunals 
Service for an independent hearing. 

Time Limits 
It is important to remember that the time limit for asking for an explanation, reconsideration and for appealing against a Housing Benefit decision is one month from the date on the decision notice. 

If you are late, special circumstances such as serious illness may extend the one-month time limit, however, you should contact us as soon as possible to explain these 
circumstances. Please note that there is an overall maximum time limit for requesting a revision or appeal of 13 months from the date of the decision

Housing Benefit overpayments

You can pay back overpayments using our Housing Benefit overpayments secure payments facility.

Information you need to provide

If you are the claimant and payments are being made direct to you:

  1. Your Housing Benefit reference number
  2. Your creditor reference (this can be found on the cheque under reference number)
  3. Your National Insurance number (this is for verification only)
  4. Your bank sort code and account number

Please note that if you hold a Post Office card account into which your State Benefits are paid, these accounts do not accept BACS payments of Housing Benefit so details of an alternative bank/building society account should be provided.

If you do not have a bank/building society account, please contact the above telephone number or any of the offices below.

If you are the landlord and receiving direct payments of Housing Benefit:

  1. Your creditor reference number (this can be found on the cheque under reference number or on the landlord payment schedule)
  2. Your tenants Housing Benefit reference number (this can be found on the landlord payment schedule)
  3. Your bank sort code and account number

Local Housing Allowance

Private Housing Benefit

Aberdeen City Council has adjusted some of the dates in which the Housing Benefit payments are made for non council tenancies. Future housing benefit payments will be made on the following dates:

Period covered Date of payment
1 to 30 April 2023 28 April 2023
1 to 31 May 2023 26 May 2023
1 to 30 June 2023 30 June 2023
1 to 31 July 2023 28 July 2023
1 to 31 August 2023 31 August 2023
1 to 30 September 2023 29 September 2023
1 to 31 October 2023 27 October 2023
1 to 30 November 2023 30 November 2023
1 to 31 December 2023 22 December 2023*
1 to 31 January 2024 26 January 2024
1 to 28 February 2024 29 February 2024
1 to 31 March 2024  29 March 2024

*December's payment is paid early due to the festive period.

This change has been made to meet the legislative requirement of payments being made at the end of the Housing Benefit period they relate to.

Payments of Private Housing Benefit are usually made by bank transfer (BACS). This is our preferred method of payment as it is both fast and secure because payments are made via transfer directly into your bank/building society account. This can reduce any delays that may occur with the post or waiting times for cheques to clear.

If you are currently paid by cheque and would like to have your Housing Benefit paid by BACS we will accept your bank details over the telephone. Please call our Customer Contact Centre on 03000 200 292 (lines are open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm) to arrange for your Housing Benefit to be paid by this method.

Discretionary Housing Payments

Council offices

  • Marischal College Customer Service Centre, Broad Street, Aberdeen, AB10 1AB.
  • Tillydrone Community Campus, Hayton Road, Aberdeen, AB24 2UY
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