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Does this count as income for benefit purposes?

(31 Posts)
MrsHuxtableReturns Fri 26-Jun-15 15:53:41

I'll probably soon be a LP to 2 pre-schoolers working part-time. I'll have to move and privately rent. I'll get HB but with the area we live in that'll only cover a part of the housing cost with a substantial amount to be paid by me.

So my question is if a family member was to subsidize my rent significantly, would that count as income and therefore reduce any benefits payments I'd qualify for?

Thanks

RepeatAdNauseum Fri 26-Jun-15 15:57:31

I think it would need to be paid directly to the landlord.

Where are you living at the moment? I wouldn't leave, if you can help it. It's quite difficult to find a landlord who accepts housing benefit, and when you do, they'll probably want to see proof that it'll cover the rent. Most landlords won't accept a third-party paying, because they could stop at any time and you'd be left without any way to pay the rent.

If the person is willing to contribute towards the rent, you might be better off borrowing 6 months so you can pay it upfront. You can then declare that you have paid upfront but you'll still be eligible for housing benefit. You could use that to pay off the person, or save it up to pay the next 6 months upfront if your circumstances haven't changed.

If it's being regularly paid directly to you, I think it'd probably be counted as income, and you'd almost certainly fail the "please produce your bank statements" spot checks that they do.

MrsHuxtableReturns Fri 26-Jun-15 16:04:06

We privately rent at the moment but we need to leave for a couple of reasons. The flat is no longer suitable for us space wise but also H is refusing to move out so unless I move there'll be no separation.

I have a local letting/estate agent friend who is confident he'll find me a place with my family member paying. But I suppose the HB might still be a problem.

RepeatAdNauseum Fri 26-Jun-15 16:51:51

It will depend who the agent friend knows - if he's got some good landlords on the books who will accept HB, you may well be fine smile

It's getting rarer, for insurance reasons, but there are still landlords who will accept benefits. I didn't want to dampen your spirits, just to suggest you might want to start looking sooner than you otherwise would because it might be a bit of a hurdle to find a good landlord.

You'll get there, one way or the other smile

lougle Fri 26-Jun-15 17:08:33

Yes it would count as income, even if directly paid to the landlord. Or alternatively, it would count as a rent reduction, so you'd only be assessed for HB for the remaining sum. Either way, it would count.

MrsHuxtableReturns Fri 26-Jun-15 18:18:58

Rentals in my area are notoriously hard to come by in general. Houses don't even get advertised as agents have a waiting list of people wanting to move here so as soon as a landlord comes to them with a house, it's gone in hours.

So if it did count as income it wouldn't actually help me much because any tax credits I'd receive would be lower therefore leaving a bigger shortfall of rent?

EeyoresTail Fri 26-Jun-15 18:21:04

I don't think maintenance counts. I take it the money wouldn't be coming from your ex?

MrsHuxtableReturns Fri 26-Jun-15 18:33:57

No, from my dad.

Viviennemary Fri 26-Jun-15 21:52:32

Technically speaking it probably would count. Could your Dad not help in another way say by paying for something else eg children's clothes or holidays.

tabulahrasa Fri 26-Jun-15 21:59:36

It would count as income, sorry.

Any regular contribution would, gifts are ok, but anything regular going towards bills or household expenses would be income.

throwingpebbles Fri 26-Jun-15 21:59:44

I think it would count, but you might want to get some v clear advice

May be better for you dad to help out with other expenses instead? Eg do a food shop/ kids clothes etc?

throwingpebbles Fri 26-Jun-15 22:01:01

Or plan a budget that you can survive on and have your dad in the background for those unexpected expenses? So my parents can't give regularly but they did bail me out when my car broke down

Electrolux Fri 26-Jun-15 22:03:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

drspouse Fri 26-Jun-15 22:11:51

Could your dad put the money in an account in the children's name and you spend it on things for them (which could include clothes, food, school trips)?

MrsHuxtableReturns Fri 26-Jun-15 23:12:45

It would be about £500 a month.

Would putting the money through the DC's account not be fraud through? And wouldn't anyone question how I'd be able to afford rent? If rent is 1k a month, full HB is £400 a month and I therefore need to top up with £600 a month, it would surely be obvious that money is coming from somewhere...

MrsHuxtableReturns Fri 26-Jun-15 23:15:46

Sadly we live in a very sought after and hence expensive area and moving is not an option.

What would happen if my dad paid all rent for me and I didn't claim any HB. Would his help also lower my tax credits and make me therefore even more reliable on him?

Q0FE Sat 27-Jun-15 08:05:10

If your dad took the tenancy in his name and paid all the rent but let you live there free of charge, that would be fine (as far as I understand it) but you then wouldn't be able to claim housing benefit at all.

Or could your dad pay a set monthly sum directly to the landlord, who then writes you a tenancy with the rent given as the remaining amount that you would have to pay iyswim? That way, on paper there is no shortfall...?

Chasingsquirrels Sat 27-Jun-15 08:11:16

.

Chasingsquirrels Sat 27-Jun-15 08:12:54

www.entitledto.co.uk/help/benefits-charity Says that it isn't income for benefits purposes.
Are there any links that say otherwise?

lougle Sat 27-Jun-15 08:15:22

That's fraudulent Q0FE.

If full HB is £400 pcm, then 30% of the properties in your area for the size of house you need will be available at that rate.

throwingpebbles Sat 27-Jun-15 08:17:28

Will their dad not pay maintenance? Maintenance from my children's dad doesn't affect tax credits etc
Could you work more hours? Childcare costs are essentially covered by tax credits so that could help?

TheGirlFromIpanema Sat 27-Jun-15 08:19:54

Help from family is definitely not counted for benefit purposes OP. Either HB or tax credits.

It is not something you earn or have an entitlement to. It is simply a gift.

I think it may be different if it wasn't an immediate family member but as it's your dad helping it's fine smile

afreshstartplease Sat 27-Jun-15 08:22:54

I wouldn't think it would count either

throwingpebbles Sat 27-Jun-15 08:32:03

However, one thing to be aware of is that family help is counted if you are seeking legal aid funding
I got legal aid due to DV but they took into account a couple of £100 emergency cash my dad sent to me when I had to leave the house with kids because of ex behaviour

Q0FE Sat 27-Jun-15 09:29:04

Which is fraudulent lougle ?

I can't see how the first would be, though I am less sure about the second confused

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