Budgeting loans

A budgeting loan from your jobcentre could help with extra costs if you claim JSA, income support or other benefits.

What you can claim for

Budgeting loans can pay for items such as:

  • furniture or household items such as washing machines
  • clothes
  • rent in advance
  • moving house
  • maintenance, improvements or security for your home
  • maternity costs
  • funeral costs
  • repaying loans you already owe for items that you could get a budgeting loan for

You don't pay interest on budgeting loans.

Who can apply

You or your partner must have been claiming any of these benefits for at least 26 weeks:

  • income support
  • income based jobseeker's allowance
  • income related employment and support allowance
  • pension credit

If you claim universal credit

You can't apply for a budgeting loan if you claim universal credit.

You can ask for:

How much you could get

The minimum loan you can apply for is £100.

You can be loaned up to:

  • £348 if you’re single
  • £464 if you have a partner 
  • £812 if you or your partner claim child benefit

How to apply

You can apply at your jobcentre, either in person or by calling the freephone 0800 169 0140. 

Claim form SF500 is available from Gov.uk

How you pay back the loan

Repayments are deducted from your benefit payments.  

Check how much is likely be deducted on gov.uk

Ask for repayments be spread over a longer period if repayments cause you hardship. 

The loan must be fully repaid within 2 years.

You must pay back what you owe if you stop getting benefits. Ask to pay in instalments if you can’t afford a lump sum. 

What to do if you are turned down

Ask for a review if your loan application is turned down or you get less than you need.

Write to your jobcentre within 28 days of the date on the decision letter. Explain why you think the decision was wrong.    

Need more help?

Find out more about other sources of cash in a crisis and help with debts.

A welfare rights or benefits adviser may be able to:

  • explain the forms and help you work out how much to ask for
  • suggest other sources of funding
  • help you ask for a review of a decision you don't agree with

Contact Citizens Advice for benefits help and information.

Last updated 08 Nov 2018 | © Shelter

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