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Quick Housing Benefit question - do I have to move?

(8 Posts)
ByThePrickingOfMyThumbs Wed 16-Mar-16 20:26:39

I am a lone parent and was made redundant a few weeks ago. I have managed to find a new job but the pay is much lower. Previously, I wasn't claiming any benefits but now I think I qualify for housing benefit. I hope so anyway because without it, paying my rent will be a struggle.

I currently rent a 3 bedroom house and live there with my 2 DDs aged 3 and 6. From the reading I've done, because I have DDs, I understand that I only qualify for a two bedroom rate. Does this mean I won't get any housing benefit if I stay at my current address? Or does it mean that I will receive housing benefit calculated using the 2 bedroom rate and will have to pay the shortfall from my other income?

I'd be grateful for any help. I'm finding negotiating the benefits system very stressful.

RandomMess Wed 16-Mar-16 20:30:24

In the short term I believe you will have to pay the shortfall but they will give you the 2 bed rate. At least that is how it was where I lived.

Do not delay in applying!!!

CactusKate Wed 16-Mar-16 20:33:18

I think you would have to pay the extra.

You could look around for a 2 bed & move when you are ready, dont panic and rush somewhere.

BirthdayBetty Wed 16-Mar-16 20:34:55

Spare room subsidy (bedroom tax) you will only get the 2 bed rate. I agree, apply asap.

VodkaValiumLattePlease Wed 16-Mar-16 20:35:36

You will be given the two bed LHA rate for your area, you could see if your council offer discretionary housing payments which you'll get if your stuck in a contract or until you move into a two bed

ByThePrickingOfMyThumbs Wed 16-Mar-16 20:44:17

Thank you everyone. That's very helpful. I got some redundancy pay which has tided me over but I take the point about applying ASAP. I'll do so tomorrow. Am relieved to hear moving immediately won't be necessary and that housing benefit will pay at least part of my rent. I love MN.

caker Wed 16-Mar-16 20:58:51

You should get 13 weeks housing benefit based on your actual rent rather than the 2 bed LHA rate. Then it will drop to the 2 bed rate. See here:

ByThePrickingOfMyThumbs Wed 16-Mar-16 21:03:40

Thanks so much for that caker. Will give me breathing space to either find somewhere smaller to rent or get a better paying job!

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