Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP)

Depending on your circumstances the Government may reduce your Housing Benefit.

  • This may be because you have more bedrooms than you need – see our page on ‘Under-Occupancy’
  • Or because you have a non-dependant person living with you – see our page on ‘Non-Dependant Deductions’

To help you through this difficult time it may be possible to claim a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP)

What is a Discretionary Housing Payment?

There is a scheme for Councils to help households at risk of hardship or homelessness, Discretionary Housing Payments are not part of the normal Housing Benefit but Councils will make payments at their discretion based on:

  • The details of the claim
  • The amount of money they have available

Who can claim a Discretionary Housing Payment?

Anyone who receives full or partial Housing Benefit and is struggling to cover housing costs.

  • If your expenses are more than your income, so that you cannot afford the rent payments.
  • If you have rent arrears that may result in you losing your home
  • If you have an under-occupancy charge (i.e. a reduction in your Housing Benefit due to bedrooms that you do not need) and are trying to move to a smaller home
  • If you have non-dependant deductions from your Housing Benefit, but this is a temporary situation.

A Discretionary Housing Payment will not be awarded for an overpayment of Housing Benefit, or an increase in rent.