Help for homeless
If you are or may become homeless, or you know of someone else who is homeless or rough sleeping, we have ways to help.
On this page:
Refer yourself or others for help
We offer free advice if you are homeless or you may become homeless. The easiest way is to refer yourself via our Housing Assistance Referral Portal as early as possible. This gives us more time to help you.
Refer yourself for help with homelessness
Other organisations can fill in the Housing Assistance Referral Portal form for you, with your prior consent.
If you are homeless today, call us on 023 8028 5222. If you need emergency assistance outside of normal office hours, call 023 8028 5250.
Refer someone else for help
We can also help if you want to let us know of someone else who is homeless or rough sleeping. You can refer someone who is homeless or sleeping rough.
Help if you are homeless
If you identify as homeless, we will assess you to see if you are eligible for help and to determine your circumstances. We may refer you to another authority for them to help you, if you have a local connection elsewhere.
You are considered homeless if:
- you do not have any accommodation available or that you have a legal right to occupy
- it is not reasonable for you to occupy your current accommodation.
If you are eligible and facing homelessness, we will decide what support you need, and steps you need to take to help you secure accommodation. In most circumstances this would be a private rented property. We operate a loan scheme where we can help you with a deposit and rent in advance for a property that is of the right size, affordable and within your support area.
In all cases, we will produce a Personalised Housing Plan (known as a PHP) which will identify your situation and the steps we have both agreed to.
Help if you could become homeless
You would be defined as threatened with homelessness if:
- you are likely to become homeless within 56 days
- you have been served with a valid notice by your landlord and this expires within 56 days.
If you could become homeless, our aim is to help you stay in your current home. We do this by providing early assistance to help resolve your situation. This may include:
- speaking with your landlord or mortgage lender, even if a court order is in place
- offering advice on debt or helping you with claiming benefits
- directing you to other services or agencies that can help, depending on your circumstances
- helping you obtain other private rented accommodation.
In all cases, we will produce a Personalised Housing Plan (known as a PHP) which will identify your situation and the steps we have both agreed to. If you remain homeless, we will make a final assessment and work out what ongoing support is needed.
Losing your home due to relationship issues
If you have recently split up with a partner, or your relationship is breaking down, we can provide advice regarding your housing situation. You can call us on 023 8028 5222. You can also contact Citizens Advice New Forest.
You should never give up your rights to a home without first seeking legal advice. If you give up your housing, you could make yourself 'intentionally homeless' and we may be unable to help you.
Information you need to provide
When you refer to us about being homeless or becoming homeless, you will need to provide some information. It would be helpful to have this ready before you first contact us. We use your information to contact you within 48 hours and offer advice or assistance.
When completing the referral, it will help us if you provide:
- names, dates of birth and address for all household members
- your National Insurance number
- an email address
- a phone number
- details of any benefits received
- why your last accommodation ended or may be ending
- any support needs.
When we contact you, we assess your circumstances and identify what can be done to help you. We may need extra information from you, such as:
- any tenancy agreement
- notices to leave from your landlord
- repossession letters from a mortgage lender
- court order letters
- identification for household members
- details of debts or household income, including wage slips or benefit details.
Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Strategy
We have completely reviewed and updated our strategy to help those who are homeless or who may become homeless. Our current strategy covers the period 2019-23.