How Housing Benefit is paid

Last Updated: 17 May 2023

Housing Benefit is paid in different ways depending on if you rent from a housing association or rent from a private landlord.

Renting from a housing association

If you rent from a housing association, your Housing Benefit will generally be paid by BACS transfer directly into your landlord's bank four weekly in arrears. Your landlord will record these payments on your rent account. You will not receive any money directly but the rent you owe will be reduced accordingly.

You can have Housing Benefit payments made directly to yourself, but this would mean that you would need to pay the full amount of the rent directly to your landlord yourself. You should contact your landlord to talk about how you will pay your rent.

You may lose your home if you get behind with your rent payments.

Renting from a private landlord

If you rent from a private landlord, you will be sent a payment by BACS transfer directly into your bank account. Landlords can insist on payments being made directly to themselves if you are in arrears with your rent by eight weeks or more.

If your Housing Benefit does not meet your rent in full, you must ensure you pay your landlord any shortfall. If there is a reason you feel you cannot manage your own payments please contact us.

All claims are paid four weekly in arrears unless you have been in receipt of Housing Benefit continuously since October 1996.