Search site

Can I claim Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction?

You can claim Housing Benefit if you have to pay rent to live in your home and/or Council Tax Reduction if you have to pay Council Tax.

Both these benefits are based on your (and your partner's) income, savings, family circumstances and the amount of rent and council tax you have to pay.

By partner we mean a person

  • you are married to
  • have a civil partnership with
  • live with as their husband, wife or civil partner

Different rules apply for Housing Benefit and for the Council Tax Reduction Scheme. There are two schemes of Council Tax Support, one for people of working age and one for people of pensionable age.

How do I make a claim?

Start a new calculation/claim here.

You can contact us for further advice.

English not your first language?

If English is not your first language and you have problems making an online calculation/claim, you can contact us by email: or telephone: 01902 551166.

What am I entitled to?

You can use our online calculator to estimate your entitlement to benefits.

When am I not eligible to claim Housing Benefit or Council Tax Reduction?

You cannot claim Housing Benefit or Council Tax Reduction if:

  • you and your partner have more than £16,000 of savings and investments between you, unless you get Pension Guarantee Credit. (Or you are applying for Second Adult Reduction). More details about savings and capital can be found below.
  • you pay rent to a close relative who lives in the same home as you do
  • you own the place where you live - you may not get Housing Benefit, but may be able to get Council Tax Reduction

Do any of my savings or capital affect my claim?

Capital or savings are cash, money in current accounts, other bank/building society/post office/credit union accounts, unit trusts, ISAs, National Savings Certificates, shares, premium bonds and property or land you own in this country or abroad but not the home you live in.

For Housing Benefit, the maximum amount of capital that be held by a claimant and/or their partner is £16,000, this limit does not apply to people in receipt of Pension Credit Guarantee.

For the Council Tax Reduction Scheme, the maximum amount of capital that can be held by a claimant or their partner that is of pensionable age is £16,000. This limit does not apply to people in receipt of Pension Credit Guarantee.

For working age people, the maximum amount that can be held by a claimant or their partner is £6,000.

Can I claim Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction if I work?

Yes you can, if you work and have a low income.

When making a claim, we will need to see proof of your wages (please send consecutive payslips):

  • your last five payslips if you get paid weekly
  • your last three payslips if you get paid fortnightly
  • your last two payslips if you get paid monthly
  • if you have just started work and not been paid yet,  ask your employer to let us have an estimate of your wages, and of your Income Tax and National Insurance payments.

We will also need proof of your (and your partner's) other income and savings/capital.

We will use this to work out your benefit/reduction until you get full details of your earnings.

Can I claim Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction if I am self-employed?

Yes, you can claim if you are self-employed and get a low income from your business. You will need to send us your most recent accounts with your claim form.

Note: We are currently working towards the introduction of an online claim form. You may wish to read the pdf icon Managing Director's Direction [450kb] in relation to this which shows support for these plans.