Housing Benefit

Housing Benefit helps pay all or part of your rent if you are on a low income.

Universal Credit

From October 2017 instead of claiming Income Support, Income related Jobseekers Allowance, Income related Employment and Support, Allowance Housing benefit, Working Tax Credit, or Child Tax Credit you may need to claim Universal Credit if you are of working age and have two children or less. 

This will depend what part of Gateshead you live in, what type of tenancy you have and how many children you have. To see if this applies to you, visit Universal Credit.  

Help with your housing costs will be included in with your Universal Credit payment so you do not need to apply for Housing Benefit from us.

You should apply for Housing Benefit, however, if you:

  • move into exempt supported accommodation, where you are receiving care, support or supervision provided by or on behalf of your landlord,
  • a refuge,
  • a hostel provided by the council
  • are placed in temporary accommodation by the council because you have become homeless.

Changes to benefits

There is a cap on the maximum amount someone of working age can receive in benefits. If you have income above the cap, your Housing Benefit could be reduced to only 50p per week. Find out more about the changes to Housing Benefit.

    Work out how much Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Support you could get, and apply.

    You can apply if you are 16 or over and pay rent, whether you are working, self-employed, unemployed or retired.

    You can help us to process your application more quickly by providing all proof and information required. It takes around 22 days to process a new Housing Benefit claim.

    Apply for Housing Benefit and / or Council Tax Support

    How to get help with your Council Tax

    Universal Credit does not replace Council Tax Support. You would still need to apply to us for help towards Council Tax. Visit Council Tax Support for more information.

    Housing Benefit

    There's no set amount of Housing Benefit. How much you get depends on:

    • how much rent you pay 
    • your household income and circumstances (including your partner's and any other adults living with you)
    • your savings and investments (if you have savings over £16,000 you will not normally get benefit, unless you have Guarantee Pension Credit)
    • if someone does not live with you but stays overnight to care for you, you may get more benefit
    • You will be automatically entitled if you are claiming income support, income based jobseekers allowance, Income related employment and support allowance or Guarantee Pension Credit. 

    If you are self employed you will need to provide your latest profit and loss account or account books for the last 

    Local Housing Allowance rates

    If you rent privately how much you get is based on the Local Housing Allowance rules. This does not apply if you are a tenant of The Gateshead Housing Company or a housing association.

    Local housing allowance rates
    Shared accommodation rate£60 per week
    One bedroom rate£90 per week
    Two bedroom rate£103.56 per week
    Three bedroom rate£115.07 per week
    Four bedroom rate£149.59 per week

    If you are of working age and you live in council accommodation or other social housing and are assessed as having at least 1 extra bedroom in your house, your Housing Benefit could be reduced by:

    • 14% if you have one extra bedroom
    • 25% if you have two or more extra bedrooms

    Additionally, if you are of working age and receive money from benefits above a certain level, your housing benefit may be reduced so you do not receive benefit above a maximum cap.

    If you live with other people including grown up children, friends and relatives your benefit may be reduced. These reductions are increasing so, anyone already getting help with their rent and council tax could receive less each year.

    Information on changes to benefits

    How benefit is paid

    Housing Benefit is normally paid from the Monday after your claim. Benefit can be backdated to an earlier date but only if you can show continuous good cause for not applying sooner.

    Icon for pdf Request for backdating benefit [33.63KB] 

    If you are a council tenant, we pay Housing Benefit straight into your rent account. If you're not a council tenant, your Housing Benefit will be paid to you by cheque or by Direct Payment into your bank or building society account.

    Change of circumstance

    You must tell us about any changes at all that could affect your benefit, for example changes to your income, household or savings.

    What you need to tell us if things change 


    If we have overpaid benefit to you we will send you a letter telling you how much and what you can do if you disagree.

    Make a payment now

    Contact us

    Benefit Enquiries
    Civic Centre
    Regent Street
    NE8 1HH

    0191 433 4646



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