Housing Benefit information for landlords

Housing Benefit is a means tested benefit to help pay rent. For more information about Housing Benefit see:

When applying for Housing Benefit the applicant is asked whether information can be shared with their landlord. If they agree we may be able to tell you how much they are being given to help with rent payments.

Understanding Universal Credit

The Government has developed a 'toolkit' to help landlords understand what Universal Credit means for them.

It consists of a top tips guide, explanatory videos, a template article for use in newsletters and e-bulletins and a social media plan with suggested copy and resources.

The Understanding Universal Credit website has been updated and now has a new landlords section. 

If your tenant is behind with their rent payments

In some circumstances payments can be made directly to the landlord. We are required to pay direct to landlords if the tenant:

  • has built up eight weeks or more in rent arrears
  • is having deductions taken from their Income Support (IS)/Jobseeker's Allowance(JSA) to pay rent arrears.

We also have the discretion to pay direct to the landlord if we think that the tenant:

  • is likely to have difficulty managing their affairs ie tenant has a learning disorder or drug/alcohol problem
  • is unlikely to pay their rent ie we are aware the tenant hasn't paid their rent in the past without good reason.

If your tenant has missed rent payments, contact us immediately using the details below to prevent the tenant building up any more debt.

For more information about when we will pay directly to landlords please read our safeguard policy.


Sometimes overpayments are unavoidable, but you can stop them happening by telling us when your tenant’s circumstances change.

West Oxfordshire District Council
New Yatt Road
OX28 1PB