Financial support for people renting

The rent arrears fund has been exhausted and will re-open in March 2024. A link to the application form will be available on this page once funds are available again.

View a video demonstration on how to apply for financial assistance if you're in rent arrears or need financial assistance with your housing costs.

Do you need any extra help?

You may be experiencing some difficulty paying your rent or have other rent-related costs you're struggling to cover. This might be especially due to the current COVID-19 outbreak.

Southwark Council's Financial Inclusion Team would like to help you if possible. If you receive Housing Benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit, we may be able to help.

We have two ways of assisting you:

  • Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP), which is used to help tenants cope with housing costs 
  • Extended Payment of Housing Benefit

Apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) or find out more information about Extended payment of Housing Benefit.

Other ways we can help

  • we manage the Rent Arrears Fund, which provides a maximum payment of £500 to stop landlords from evicting tenants because of rent arrears
  • we provide advice and assistance to those affected by welfare reforms, such as the Social Sector Size criteria (otherwise known as bedroom tax), benefit cap, Local Housing Allowance reforms or Universal Credit)
  • we help with budgeting and finding alternative solutions to housing needs (for example, providing a deposit so that you can move into a more affordable property)

We advise and assist tenants at risk of losing their homes or worried about their current housing situation. We actively work with other agencies, including Jobcentre Plus who help tenants find employment or downsize through Smart Move or Mutual Exchange

If you need more information, contact us.

Free and confidential debt advice and personalised recommendations for resolving debt are available from Step Change.

Homelessness Prevention Affordability Assessment Tool - use this calculator to review your budget, manage your finances better and check the affordability of alternative properties

Page last updated: 11 October 2023


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