Discretionary Housing Payments

The Discretionary Housing Payment fund is a limited amount of money that the Government makes available for Burnley Borough Council to spend to support customers who are in receipt of Housing Benefit or the Housing Element of Universal Credit but who are struggling financially to meet their housing costs.

There are two different types of application that can be made to the DHP fund:

1. An application for an ongoing top-up payment.

This is to help customers who are in receipt of

  • Housing benefit or
  • the housing element of Universal Credit

but the amount they receive does not cover the full amount of rent they are charged.

There are strict rules governing the administration of the discretionary housing payments scheme. You will not be considered for a payment if:

  • You have not qualified for any housing benefit/housing costs at all
  • The shortfall is due to additional amounts being charged for arrears and/or court costs
  • The shortfall is due to additional amounts being charged for services that are ineligible for housing benefit e.g. fuel charges, meals etc.
  • The help you need is in respect of other bills and not rent
  • The help you need is due to reductions in any benefit as a result of jobseekers sanctions, Child Support sanctions or sanctions following certain offences
  • The help you need is a result of your housing benefit/housing costs being suspended
  • You are already receiving full housing benefit/housing costs

We would expect you to have considered the following where appropriate before applying:

  • try to negotiate a lower rent with your landlord
  • look for cheaper alternative accommodation
  • seek advice from other organisations about how you can improve your situation

2. An application for a one-off DHP payment towards moving costs

This is to help towards the moving costs associated with securing an alternative tenancy such as administration fees, deposits and removal costs.

An application for a one-off DHP lump sum payment can only be considered if:

  • Your reasons for needing to move are unavoidable
  • You are entitled to housing benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit.
  • You have not yet signed the tenancy and moved into the property.
  • The property is affordable to you i.e. you can afford to pay any rent top-up due yourself
  • You have answered ALL of the questions in the form fully.
  • You have provided all of the supporting evidence required

Please be aware that we have limited funds and any award may be restricted to what we consider is a reasonable amount for your circumstances.