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Renting and 'No DSS'

(23 Posts)
SouthernComforts Mon 14-Dec-15 18:18:20


I am looking to rent a house for me and my dc in the New year, (currently live with my parents). I work full time on a low wage and would qualify for some housing benefit. Every private rental property I have seen states 'no dss'.

I've registered on with my local HA too but most of the properties are unsuitable (1 beds or retirement) or have hundreds of bids. Plus I am in a low need band.

I have saved 3 months rent, but I can't find a single property online that I am 'eligible' for!

Does anyone know how flexible estate agents/landlords can be wrt housing benefit? Is it worth going into an estate agents and explaining my situation?


Seeyounearertime Mon 14-Dec-15 18:21:47

Try Gumtree and find a private landlord, they may accept HB.

Shelter, I believe, suggest speaking to the Letting Agent and offering double deposit or increased rent. Either way, speaking to the Letting Agent is always a good start. They may speak to the LL on your behalf and try to arrange a solution.

I would advise your to NOT try to use a guarantor. I know its okay in theory but it can lead to horrific issues down the line.

Artandco Mon 14-Dec-15 18:24:00

Get a 1bed? More space that staying at parents surely

SouthernComforts Mon 14-Dec-15 18:28:20

Thanks See, I am looking on Right move, zoopla and Gumtree, same 5-6 properties on all of them (in my budget)!

Ironically, I'm sure my parents could and would be my guarantor(s), despite me having a higher income than either of them hmm

SouthernComforts Mon 14-Dec-15 18:30:01

Me and dd have a bedroom each currently.

MrsFlorrick Mon 14-Dec-15 18:31:49

Many landlords are flexible. You need to speak to the local estate agents and put forward your situation fully. If your credit score is ok then plenty of landlords would take a view on housing benefit.

Don't forget the agents only get paid when they've let a property which means that they will sell your case to their landlords to get a property let.

Granted there will always be those who won't accept you. It's not necessarily about you or benefits but about their lending banks terms and conditions prohibiting them from letting to HB tenants.

Don't despair. Get into agents and private gumtree listings and see what you can find.

If you have a poor credit rating and CCJs this will be a much bigger issue than HB. And in this event you will need a guarantor.

queenofthepirates Mon 14-Dec-15 18:34:04

Well HB is paid directly to you so how would they know?

90sforever Mon 14-Dec-15 18:37:15

Single credit hasn't been completely rolled out yet has it? Its only certain areas.

You probably aren't able to bid on the 1 beds because they're too small. I agree with the others, offer larger deposits (not sure what can go wrong with a guarantor? Although they don't mean much) references etc. good luck

BlackHillsofDakota Mon 14-Dec-15 18:38:02

They'd know because there is a threshold of what you need to earn and if you don't meet it you'll fail referencing.
It's usually 30 times the rent so, if the rent was £500 pcm you would need to earn £15,000 per year before tax. If you earn enough then the fact that you get some housing benefit will not matter to most agents.

90sforever Mon 14-Dec-15 18:38:06

Also ask your Local hosting associatings about other lettings not just social rent. They might be able to offer you a different kind of property (they offer all sorts)

90sforever Mon 14-Dec-15 18:38:22

Housing association sorry

SouthernComforts Mon 14-Dec-15 18:39:37

Thanks Mrs, my credit score is good, thankfully. I think I will go into my local agents and put my case across smile

I'm not sure tbh Queen!

SouthernComforts Mon 14-Dec-15 18:46:53

That's interesting BlackHills, I didn't know that. Would income include tax credits, child benefit or child maintenance? Or purely income from wage?

PettsWoodParadise Mon 14-Dec-15 18:54:05

As a private landlord (don't shoot me, trying to give some helpful insight) who had rented to HB tenants in the past, it is too risky now unless the top up they get is a very small portion of what they get as HB. When a tenant has a change in circumstances it can cause huge delays, I experienced problems where I've had no rent for months and still had to pay all the bills and mortgage, then had tenants where the LA recommends that they need a larger or smaller property and so need to 'arrange an eviction' and it has been so distressing for everyone including me as the landlord. I would only ever do it again where the HB was say 20% or less. You may find some naive landlords who won't do credit checks or like us were at one point trying to make a difference and only later got shafted and now can't afford to take the risk. Sadly that usually means the only options in the private rented sector are a rookie landlord, a landlord who had only had positive experiences of HB tenants and I am sure there must be a good number, agents who specialise in this area (rare), landlords with properties that wouldn't be touched with a barge-pole by most sane people. I advertise on openrent which also puts an ad on Rightmove and gumtree. No fees for the tenant either which is an advantage over an agency. Good luck.

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Mon 14-Dec-15 18:58:33

As a landlord I would rent a house out to someone in your situation, especially if your parents would be guarantors.

Artandco Mon 14-Dec-15 18:59:11

Sorry but if you can't afford a 2 bed you can't.

We are in a private 1 bed flat due to this. 4 of us. There's only 2 of you. You can't expect larger properties if you can't pay for it with your own money

Seeyounearertime Mon 14-Dec-15 19:00:20

I say avoid guarantors because of the risknit places the guarantor in. Anything bad happens and its the guarantor looking at the debt, answering to bailiffs etc etc.

90sforever Mon 14-Dec-15 19:13:32

I always think a guarantor is a waste of time. Unless they take them to court they can't get the money out of the guarantor anyway, unless given willingly.

SouthernComforts Mon 14-Dec-15 19:25:51

Thanks everyone for your input.

Art, fair point, and if push came to shove I wouldn't rule out a 1 bedroom property. There will still be a huge number of people eligible for a 1 bed HA property before me though. I am adequately housed - parents want to sell up, downsize, and fully retire, but will wait (within reason) until I have my own place. (I realise I am very fortunate here)

Obviously the solution is earn more and I am working on that!

specialsubject Mon 14-Dec-15 19:28:02

it is absolutely worth asking - 'sell' yourself as a good tenant, i.e. can run a home, non-smoker, no pets, working, small HB top up.

it is never worth lying, this is suggested every time. Yes, you'll get found out, that's tenancy breach which gets you evicted and then good luck with future rentals. Those that suggest fraud do not seem to queue up to offer accomodation...

'no HB' is a default on the ads (for some reason) so see the agents, put your case and best of (deserved) luck.

BlackHillsofDakota Mon 14-Dec-15 19:47:43

I can only speak personally as all agents are different, however we take in to account child tax credits but not working tax credits and Income support but not child benefits.
Also we would not rent a 1 bed to an adult and a child so this may not be an option anyway.

orchidnap Mon 14-Dec-15 21:05:40

Quite a lot of btl mortgages and landlord insurance state no benefit claimants so it's our of the landlords control.

SouthernComforts Mon 14-Dec-15 21:58:36

I understand that orchid, and that is fair enough.

Thanks again Black and everyone else, I will sit down and do the sums before I go to the letting agent.

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