Local Housing Allowance

If you are renting a property or room from a private landlord, the Local Housing Allowance is used to work out how much Housing Benefit you can get.

The amount of Housing Benefit you get will depend on where you live and who lives with you. The rates range from a single room in a shared house up to properties with four bedrooms.

Find out more about Housing Benefit.

How rates are calculated

Local Housing Allowance rates are set annually. Your rate is based on the number of bedrooms you need, not the number of bedrooms in the property you rent. 

You are allowed one bedroom for:

  • each adult couple
  • any other adult (age 16 or over)
  • any two children aged under 10
  • and two children of the same sex aged under 16 or any other child
  • in certain circumstances where a severely disabled child or adult is unable to share a bedroom.

The maximum number of bedrooms is capped at four.

If you are single and aged under 35 or a joint tenant, the Shared Rate applies to you. There some exemptions for:

  • severely disabled people
  • care leavers aged under 22
  • those with a bedroom used by a carer who stays overnight.

Local Housing Allowance rates

Below are the Local Housing Allowance rates from 1 April 2020. There are different rates for each of the three market areas that cover New Forest.

Local Housing Allowance rates for Bournemouth market area
Rate typePer weekPer month
Shared Rate£76.50£332.41
One bedroom£137.74£598.51
Two bedrooms£174.90£759.98
Three bedrooms£218.63£950
Four bedrooms£287.67£1249

Local Housing Allowance rates for Salisbury market area

Rate typePer weekPer month
Shared Rate£83.10£361.09
One bedroom£132.33£575.01
Two bedrooms£166.85£725
Three bedrooms£195.62£850.02
Four bedrooms£253.15£1100

Local Housing Allowance rates for Southampton market area

Rate typePer weekPer month
Shared Rate£77.44£336.50
One bedroom£136.93£594.99
Two bedrooms£178.36£775.02
Three bedrooms£212.88£925.01
Four bedrooms£276.16£1199.98

Exceptions

Local Housing Allowance does not affect any of the following:

  • Registered social landlord tenancies.
  • Protected cases, such as supported housing provided by certain local authorities, social landlords, charities and voluntary organisations.
  • Tenancies which are excluded, such as pre-1989 tenancies.
  • Exceptional cases such as caravans, houseboats and hostels.
  • Where the rent includes meals.

Help with rent

If the rent you are charged is more than the Local Housing Allowance, the maximum amount of Housing Benefit you can get is your Local Housing Allowance rate. 

Extra help with rent is available through Discretionary Housing Payments.

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