Council help and support if you cannot afford a suitable home

The council must consider your needs and situation if you ask them for homeless help.

They must draw up a personal housing plan for you if they decide that:

This includes what you can afford, the size and location of housing you need and any additional disability or health needs.

If you cannot afford to stay in your home

You can be legally homeless if you cannot afford to pay your rent or mortgage as well as other essential costs like food, heating, clothing and transport.

You can ask the council to consider you homeless and help you to find suitable, affordable housing. You do not always need an eviction notice from your landlord to get this help.

The council might ask to see details of your:

  • rent or mortgage costs

  • household bills

  • income from work, benefits or a pension

  • child maintenance payments

  • contributions to your rent or mortgage from other people - for example, adult children who live with you

Use our homelessness tool to check if the council can help you

If you want to stay in the same area

Tell the council if you need to stay in the area because of:

  • work

  • caring commitments

  • a local support network

  • specialist medical appointments

  • children in school or college - especially if they have educational support needs or are studying for exams

Offers of housing in another council area

The council must try to find you housing within their area.

You might be offered housing in a different area if there is a shortage of affordable housing where you live.

Find out more about:

Use our letter template

You might find it difficult to get help from the council if you are not facing eviction.

Our letter template can help you to ask the council's housing options team for help with housing if you're struggling to afford a suitable home.

Include as much detail about your income and outgoings in the letter as you can. Contact the council again if you do not hear anything.

Last updated: 22 March 2023

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