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Do you have to pay rent on two properties?

Housing Benefit is normally only paid for the rent you pay on one property (your main home). However, you may be able to have benefit paid on two properties in certain cases.

Your old address

If you change address, benefit will be stopped from the date you move out. However, you may still be entitled to Housing Benefit for up to 4 weeks after you move out, if:

  • the landlord continues to charge you rent – you will need to give details from the landlord that rent is payable after you moved out and up to the tenancy end date and

  • you have moved into a new home (not a temporary home) and

  • you can prove it is unavoidable to pay rent on both homes.

The new address

For your new address we will ask you to complete a change of circumstances form and provide new details to support it. We will need to see details which prove you live at this new address and details of your income and any savings.

Benefit for your new home will normally be paid:

  • from the Monday after you moved in or

  • the tenancy start date, if we get the claim within the same week you became responsible for the rent.

A benefit week is from Monday to Sunday.

Benefit for a period before moving in? (Benefit prior to occupation)

Where rent is payable from the start of a tenancy but you do not move in until sometime later, benefit may be allowed for a period of up to 4 weeks prior to moving in date.

The delay in moving in to the new address must have been due to:

  • a change is being made to the new dwelling to meet the disabled needs of you or a member of your household or

  • you are waiting for a social fund payment to help with the move or in connection with setting up the new home, and

  • a family member is aged under 5 or your benefit entitlement includes an amount for one of the following premiums – Pensioner, Enhanced Pensioner, Higher Pensioner, Disability, Severe Disability or a Disabled Child Premium or

  • you became responsible to pay the rent on your new home while you were in hospital or residential care home.

However, even when the above conditions are met in points 2) or 3), benefit cannot be paid if you (the tenant) had to pay rent on a previous property immediately before the tenancy started at the new address. To be considered for benefit before moving in you must apply to us within 4 weeks of moving into the new home.