Discretionary Housing Payments
Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP) are payments awarded, by the Council, from a cash-limited fund, where severe exceptional circumstances mean you need additional help with Housing costs.
DHP's do not cover the cost of ineligible services which are included in your rent such as fuel, meals etc. It is a temporary "top up" to your Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit to help you through a difficult period, particularly financial hardship. They are not intended as long-term payments. You must be eligible for some Housing Benefit or Council tax benefit before you can claim from the DHP fund.
Can I claim a DHP?
You can make a claim for a DHP if:
- you currently get Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit.
- your Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit is less than the full amount of your Rent or Council Tax.
- the council is satisfied that you need more help with housing costs for example help to move to a cheaper property or rent in advance on a cheaper property.
How do you decide who gets a DHP?
We look at things like:
- your total income and savings
- whether anyone else can help you financially
- any loans or debts you are repaying
- whether you could ease the situation yourself by re-arranging your outgoings
- whether you or anyone in your household has any special needs or health issues
- whether you are in arrears with rent and/or Council Tax
How are DHP's paid?
Although they are not classed as Housing Benefit payments we add them on to your Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit award. So, if you are a private tenant, you would get your DHP payment added to your rent allowance. Council tax DHP would be credited to your bill.