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Claiming benefits if you're homeless

You can usually claim universal credit if you're on the streets, sofa surfing or staying in a hostel.

If you're staying in a hostel, you can also get housing benefit to help with rent.

You do not need a fixed address or a bank account to claim benefits.

If you do not have a fixed address

When you apply for benefits you could use the address of a:

You may get less benefit if you are on the streets.

If you do not have a bank account

Some people can use the Payment Exception Service to collect benefits from:

  • any PayPoint outlet

  • any Post Office

Your local jobcentre can help you.

Find out more about the Payment Exception Service on GOV.UK.

It's a good idea to open a bank account so you can keep your money safe.

Read our guide on how to open a bank account if you're homeless.

Immigration conditions

You can only get benefits if you meet the immigration rules.

Find out who can get universal credit.

Find help if you cannot get benefits because of immigration rules.

Last updated: 6 January 2023

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