Discretionary housing payments

  • Latest update - Monday 5 December 2022: Funds for this financial year have been exhausted and we are no longer able to accept Discretionary Housing Payment applications from residents living in Eastbourne. The Lewes district scheme remains open. 

Discretionary housing payments (DHPs) help those who are in receipt of housing benefits to meet the cost of their rent. This is normally awarded where there is a shortfall between the eligible rent and housing benefit. 

You can also apply for a DHP if you require help with your rent or deposit on a prospective new property, it is only awarded in exceptional circumstances and when you have no other means of getting the rent in advance or deposit and may need to be repaid.

A DHP cannot be awarded to cover service charges such as; charges for personal heating, lighting, hot water or water rates. It can also not be awarded to cover arrears of rent that you may owe. DHP is awarded to help people in the short term and cannot be relied upon for the long term, they would normally only be awarded for up to a maximum period of 26 weeks.

If you are in receipt of Universal Credit and have the housing cost element in your award, you may be able to claim for help towards a shortfall or arrears. You will need to complete an application form below. 

Can I appeal against a DHP decision?

If you disagree with a decision about your request for a DHP, you should write to us and explain why you do not agree with the decision and provide any supporting evidence. This must be sent to us within one month of the date of the letter telling you about the award.

The decision will be looked at by one of our senior officers and they will write to you after they have reviewed your case. However, because the fund is a discretionary, limited fund, there is no right of appeal to the Independent Tribunals Service.

How do I apply for a DHP?

To apply for a DHP, please complete our online form.  For information about how the council uses your personal information to process these payments please read the DHP privacy notice in the Privacy Notices for our range of services tab.

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