Help we can provide if you are homeless
The sooner you make Housing Services aware of your housing situation, the more likely we are to be able to help you.
If you are homeless today and have nobody you can stay with temporarily, you will be referred to the Duty Officer. The Duty Officer will take further information from you and depending on your circumstances and eligibility, may look to secure temporary accommodation for you whilst further enquiries into your circumstances are made.
If you are not actually homeless today but are concerned you may be soon, the First Contact Officer will take initial details from you and then arrange for you to be contacted by a Caseworker.
Your Caseworker will contact you and work with you on identifying suitable housing options. The Caseworker will draw up a Housing Plan with you, and this will detail the reasonable steps you and the Caseworker will take to secure suitable accommodation, and this could include Council or Housing Association accommodation, or Privately Rented Accommodation.
You will need to work closely with your Caseworker as they will be able to advise you on your options, focusing on practical and legal advice to help you stay where you are and/or help you to find alternative accommodation.
Some examples of things we may try are:
- Negotiating with your landlord, friends or relatives to enable you to remain in your home
- Making sure you are receiving all benefits you are entitled to so you are able to afford to remain in your home (ie maximising your income)
If we cannot prevent your homelessness, then we will help you look for somewhere else to live.
Your Caseworker will ensure you are clear on what your options are and all decisions about your case will be confirmed to you in writing. If you do not agree with a decision that has been made, you can ask for the decision to be reviewed.
Whilst working with you, your Caseworker may determine that because of the actions you have taken you have made yourself Intentionally Homeless. You can find out more about this here.
If we agree that you are homeless today and have nowhere you can stay temporarily, we must determine whether we have to provide you with temporary accommodation.
We have a legal duty to provide you with temporary accommodation if we determine that you are in.
Reviewing the decision
You can request a review of a decision made by us if you do not agree with it. You will find details of who to contact regarding requesting a review in the decision letter you are provided with. Your review request should be made within 21 days and you may find it easier to set out your reasons for requesting a review in writing so that you can illustrate your points. You should ensure you explain if you feel important issues about your circumstances have not been given proper consideration.
If you have been made an offer of accommodation by us, but you feel it is not suitable for you, you can also request a review. We would encourage you to take the offer even if you are requesting a review, as if the review goes against you we will not make any further offers of accommodation to you. Also, if you have been provided with temporary accommodation you will be required to leave the accommodation should the review go against you.