Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP)
A DHP award can be made if:
- your Housing Benefit, Local Housing Allowance or the Housing Costs Element of Universal Credit do not cover the full cost of your rent,
- you need help with removal costs or
- you need help with a rent deposit.
You will not be able to get a DHP award if:
- your housing costs are for help towards paying a mortgage
- the shortfall is caused by having deductions taken off your Housing Benefit or Local Housing Allowance (LHA) to repay an overpayment
- you have to pay more rent because you are paying back rent arrears
- the shortfall is due to you having to pay certain service or support charges with your rent
- your other benefits are subject to a sanction or disallowance by the DWP.
Your benefit does not cover the full cost of your rent
This may be because:
- your benefit has been reduced due to the "Bedroom Tax" - Size Criteria in the Social Rented Sector
- you are affected by the Household Benefit Cap
- you are living in the private sector and the amount of yourLocal Housing Allowance has been restricted
- your benefit has been reduced as there are other adults living in your house (non dependants).
- your income is higher than your "applicable amount" -
Your applicable amount is an agreed amount, set in law, used in benefit calculations. The higher your weekly income is above your applicable amount, the less benefit you will receive.
How to apply for a DHP when your benefit does not cover the full cost of your rent:
If you are making a brand new application for DHP, please complete a DHP application form [269Kb].
If you are getting Universal Credit, you will instead need to complete a Universal Credit DHP application form. [224Kb].
DHPs for rent deposits
If you are moving to accommodation in the private sector, you may be able to get a DHP to help pay for a deposit.
You will not be able to get a DHP to help pay a deposit if:
- you want to take on a tenancy but you cannot afford any shortfall or deposit. No award would be made for the deposit or for the shortfall unless there is good reason for your application (financial hardship on its own would not be accepted).
- you are awaiting the return of a deposit from your previous landlord.
How to apply for a DHP for a rent deposit:
Please complete a DHP Rent Deposit application form [317Kb].
How are applications for DHPs decided?
Because the scheme is discretionary and the budget it limited, there is no guarantee that you will get awarded a payment. Although each application is decided according to your own individual circumstances, priority is given to the following situations:
|Reason for application||Priority circumstances|
|Your benefit does not cover the full cost of your rent|
If you are awarded a DHP to meet a shortfall in your rent payments, the award may be limited to a fixed short-term period in order to allow you to find alternative accommodation.
|You have expenses to do with moving home (removal costs and rent deposits)|
Frequently Asked Questions
When will I receive a decision on my application?
In most cases you should receive a decision on your application within 21 days. If you do not hear within this timescale, it could be that we are waiting on further information from you or we may be experiencing a high number of applications.
Can my DHP application be backdated?
Most DHP applications can be considered from the beginning of the financial year (April) however this cannot be guaranteed. The more information you give us regarding the need for backdating, the greater the likelihood that backdating will be successful.
I am getting DHP due to the Bedroom Tax. Do I have to re-apply for it every year?
If you are getting DHP due to the Bedroom Tax (Size Criteria in the Social Rented Sector) then your entitlement will automatically continue into the next financial year without the need for you to re-apply.
My DHP application has been refused or come to an end and I am struggling to pay the difference between my benefit and my rent. Is there any other help available?
If you are unhappy with the decision on your DHP application you can ask for the decision to be looked at again. This is called a review and must be made in writing within one calendar month of getting the decision.
DHP - Facts and Figures
View useful statistics about Perth & Kinross Council's Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) scheme.