Housing Benefit and the housing element of Universal Credit for Social Housing tenancies created after 1st April 2016 is to be capped at the local housing allowance levels from 1st April 2018.
If you signed for a tenancy before 1st April 2016, these changes will not affect you.
If you sign for a new tenancy after 1st April 2016 and you get Housing Benefit or Universal Credit to help you pay your rent, you may find that the help you get does not cover the whole rent. This also applies if you have to renew your tenancy or transfer to another property.
The maximum amount of benefit than can be paid towards your rent and service charges is going to be capped at the Local Housing Allowance. The Local Housing Allowance maximum depends on two things:
• Where you live
• The size of your household
You can find out what the Local Housing Allowance is for where you live by visiting the Valuation Office Agency website: http://lha-direct.voa.gov.uk/search.aspx
If the rent you pay is currently above the Local Housing Allowance for the size of property you need, you will have to pay the difference.
But if the amount of housing benefit you get is less than the Local Housing Allowance, you will only get the lower amount.
Between now and April 2018 Housing Benefit and Universal Credit will still be calculated in the usual way. The Local Housing Allowance cap will then come into force on April 1st 2018 for any tenancy which started after April 1st 2016.
If you want to find how these changes may affect you please contact your Housing Officer on 01224 423000 or firstname.lastname@example.org