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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Shortfall

You must pay rent to your landlord in return for living in the property. If you stop paying your rent, are late with a payment or do not pay in full, your landlord may begin eviction proceedings against you.

You must pay rent to your landlord in return for living in the property. If you stop paying your rent, are late with a payment or do not pay in full, your landlord may begin eviction proceedings against you.

If you are on a low income, you may be entitled to Housing Benefit to help you pay your rent. Most people who rent privately have their entitlement to housing benefit worked out under a system called Local Housing Allowance.

Almost everyone will experience difficulties paying their bills at some point. If you are worried about falling into arrears or missing a payment of rent, you should talk to your landlord about the problem. Free debt advice is available from a variety of local advice agencies.

Local housing allowance calculates housing benefit for people living in private rented accommodation. The scheme was introduced in April 2008 and it applies for certain groups of private tenants only.

The amount of housing benefit you will get depends on your personal circumstances, such as your income and savings, the size of your household and the area you live/wish to live in.

Private tenants can apply for extra housing benefit if the amount they are getting doesn't cover their rent. This is known as a discretionary housing payment. The Housing Executive decides whether you are entitled to extra benefit and how much you should get.

The amount of housing benefit that is paid to single people aged under 35 who rent privately is often restricted. There are some exemptions that apply.

There are a few key steps you need to take to deal with your debts effectively. A charity that provides debt advice can often help you with this.

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