Discretionary housing payment

If you receive housing benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit and are struggling to pay your rent, we may be able to offer you a short-term discretionary housing payment. They are also available to assist with one-off costs like rent in advance or removal costs to help you to move into a new home. Discretionary housing payments are not a loan so don't need to be repaid.

How can the council help me to cover my housing costs?

If you are struggling to pay your rent, we might be able to offer you a discretionary housing payment (DHP). This is a short-term payment from the council to help cover some housing costs.

We have a limited sum of money available to help people who are claiming Universal Credit (including the housing element) or housing benefit, and who still have some rent to pay.

We decide how DHPs are allocated and each case is decided on its own merits. There isn't a clear set of allocation rules but we must be fair and reasonable when deciding.

Who is entitled to claim a discretionary housing payment?

Anyone who needs further help with housing costs, and is currently claiming housing benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit can claim a discretionary housing payment.

Please note: you can't get a discretionary housing payment if your rent shortfall is caused by benefit suspension or housing benefit overpayment.

What does a discretionary housing payment cover?

A discretionary payment can help with:

  • any shortfall in your rent
  • restrictions in housing benefit due to the size criteria being applied in the social rented sector (bedroom tax) or the benefit cap
  • rent in advance if you need to move home. If you require help with a bond/deposit you may be eligible to apply to the bond scheme
  • help with removal costs.

Do I have to pay the council back?

We don't currently recover discretionary housing payments unless you have purposely provided incorrect details in your application.

What information do I need to provide?

You will need to provide certain information when you make your application. Please gather this information before you start the form.

Personal details

  • full name
  • address including postcode
  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number.

Household details

You will need the following information for all members of your household:

  • full names
  • dates of birth
  • National Insurance numbers if over 18 years old.


Details of earned and unearned income for you and your partner.


Details of all savings and investments for you and your partner.


Details of all your weekly/monthly expenses for you and your partner:

  • entertainment and recreation
  • TV License and satellite/cable TV
  • council tax
  • gas/oil/electric
  • insurance
  • internet
  • water rates
  • telephone
  • childcare/school meals
  • clothing
  • food
  • car tax and insurance
  • petrol, diesel and car parking
  • rail or bus fares
  • rent.

Outstanding Debts

  • name of debtor
  • amount outstanding
  • weekly payments.

If you are requesting on-going help with your current weekly or monthly rent please tell us if you:

  • have extra health-related expenses or need an extra room because of sickness or disability
  • have extra travel costs because you travel to a hospital or you care for a relative or friend
  • have work-related travel costs that would increase if you had to move
  • are likely to become homeless
  • are having financial difficulties
  • need an extra bedroom for an overnight carer.

If you are requesting help for rent in advance you will need to provide the name address and telephone number of your new landlord.

You must provide any information that is relevant to your claim to help the decision maker fully assess your claim and make their decision.

Please note: if you have recently made a claim for Universal Credit we will be unable to process your DHP application until we can confirm that you have been awarded the housing cost element of Universal Credit.

How can I make a claim for a discretionary housing payment?

You can make a claim by completing the online form below.

Please note: if you have problems accessing the review you may need to allow pop-ups in your browser to continue.

Apply for a discretionary housing payment

Can I appeal the decision?

There are no rights of appeal, although you can ask us to reconsider our decision by contacting the discretionary team:

Email: adjudication@eastriding.gov.uk

Further information regarding the Discretionary Housing Payment scheme operated by the council, can be found below:

Discretionary Housing Payment policy (pdf 398kb)

Where can I find information about debt, budgeting or other financial help?

Our money advice page can help you with:

  • An online budgeting tool to help you create your own personal budget plan
  • Access to our welfare visiting team who can offer information and advice about debt and budgeting
  • Links to other organisations who can help with managing debt.

Visit the money advice page

Free impartial debt advice

There are also a number of independent organisations who can provide useful advice and information for people who are experiencing financial problems.

Take a look at organisations that can offer financial and debt advice.

I am having financial difficulties, can you help me in any other way?

East Riding of Yorkshire Council have an emergency assistance scheme which aims to help residents of East Riding of Yorkshire who are in need at a time of crisis where there has been an interruption to their regular income, or require assistance when establishing themselves or remaining within the community.

Read more about the Emergency Assistance scheme.

Can I request a hold on recovery action and additional fees?

Read about the new, statutory scheme called ‘Breathing Space’ which is designed to provide people with debt problems the right to legal protection from creditors for a limited period of time.

Subscribe to East Riding of Yorkshire Council

Stay updated on the latest East Riding news

We use GovDelivery to send you emails, which is secure and you can choose to stop receiving emails at any time.

Find out more in our Privacy notice.

Subscribe to East Riding News