Housing Benefit payments

Please read our information on how we are supporting residents and businesses, as well as information on affected services.


How will you pay my housing benefit

Housing Benefit can provide you with additional money to help you pay your rent if you are unemployed, on a low income or claiming other benefits.  You may get help with part or all of your rent.  There is not a set amount paid to everybody.  It will depend on the size of your household, whether you rent privately, from a council or a housing association. 

Payments of Housing Benefit can be made in different ways depending on the type of tenancy you have.  Normally we would pay the benefit to you but we may be able to pay your landlord if you are vulnerable. Also for certain types of tenancies,  we may pay your benefit to your landlord.

Payments of Housing Benefit can be made in different ways. Payments can also be made covering different periods of time.  This will depend on the type of tenancy you have, whether you are vulnerable or who your landlord is.  

Council tenants

We pay your housing benefit award straight to your rent account, normally weekly and in advance.

For all other payments of Housing benefit, these are paid in arrears.

Housing Association tenants

We can pay your housing benefit into your bank account every four weeks.

Alternatively, we can pay your benefit straight to your landlord every four weeks:

  • If you ask us to, or
  • If you owe eight weeks or more in rent, or
  • If we decide it’s in your best interests to do so

Private tenants

We will usually pay your housing benefit into your bank account every four weeks or every 2 weeks.

We can pay your benefit straight to your landlord every four weeks:

  • If you owe eight weeks or more in rent, or
  • If we decide it’s in your best interests to do so

If your Housing Benefit award is based on the Local Housing Allowance you cannot choose how we pay your benefit.  We must pay Housing Benefit into your bank account.  This is unless there are special reasons that mean we can consider paying someone else, like your landlord.  

When we can pay your landlord direct

If you rent from a private landlord, we’ll normally pay housing benefit directly to you.

However:

  • If you rent your home from Cornwall Housing, we’ll pay any housing benefit direct to your rent account; or
  • If you rent your home from a Housing Association we can pay your landlord direct if you ask us to;

If you are more than eight weeks in arrears with your rent we will pay your landlord direct.

If you have vacated your property and still owe rent, we will pay your final payment direct to your landlord.

Sometimes we can make payments direct to your landlord if we think making payments to you will cause you serious financial problems.  You can find out more in our local housing allowance safeguard policy.

Ask us to pay your landlord direct

You can fill in the form yourself.  If you are not able to do this your landlord or someone else can do it for you.

If we decide we can make payments direct to your landlord, we will usually review this decision from time to time.  This is just to check if this is still the right option for you.

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