Your rent is your responsibility

It is your responsibility to make sure your rent is paid on time, even if we pay benefits direct to your landlord or rent account.

The amount of benefit we pay might not cover your full rent. You are responsible for paying the rest.

  • If you rent from a private landlord we will normally pay benefit to you and you are then responsible for paying your landlord.
  • If you are a council tenant we will pay Housing Benefit directly to your rent account and you must pay the shortfall if your benefit doesn't cover your full rent.
  • If you rent from a housing association you can ask us to pay your benefit direct to the housing association if you wish, but you are responsible for making up any shortfall.

Regardless of who you rent from and how your benefit is paid, you must make sure the rent is paid in full and on time. If you do not do this, you may face eviction and become homeless. You will still need to pay back the money you owe and you may have to pay extra to cover court costs.

Stay in control

  • Get your benefit paid directly into a bank account. We can't pay into a Post Office or savings account.
  • Make sure you know what the shortfall is if your benefit is less than your rent.
  • Agree a regular payment date with your landlord on the same date each month.
  • Set up a standing order from your bank account to your landlord or letting agent.
  • Keep a record of all the payments you need to make.

You can contact Runnymede and Spelthorne Citizens Advice Bureau if you need help with any of this.

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