When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Universal credit in Northern Ireland

Most people who need to start claiming benefits will now claim Universal Credit. You can make and manage a Universal Credit claim online. The phone number for Universal Credit in Northern Ireland is 0800 012 1331 

The government planned to move people who are claiming certain other benefits on to Universal Credit from 2020 but COVID-19 has slowed down this plan. 

Universal credit is rolling out across Northern Ireland. Since December 2018 any working age person making a new claim for social security assistance will claim universal credit instead of some of the current benefits, including Housing Benefit.


The amount of your universal credit payment will depend on several things, such as your personal circumstances and your income. 

Your universal credit claim will include help with your rent or your mortgage. You will still have to make a separate claim for help with your rates. You make this claim through Land & Property Services.

You can’t get help with rates as part of your Universal Credit claim. Instead, you will be able to apply for a rates rebate. Land & Property Services will be in charge of managing the rates rebate system.

You claim Universal Credit online. Your local jobcentre has computers you can choose to submit your claim. You can call 0800 012 1331 for help making the online application or if you are not able to make an online claim.

Your entitlement to Universal Credit starts on the day you answer all the questions on your application and submit your declaration. But, it will be five weeks or longer before you receive your first payment. You can ask for an advance payment if you are worried about money during this time.