There are laws to help you, whether you're being unfairly evicted by your landlord, or you or your children are not safe where you live. Find out how you can get help and support if you are homeless or face the prospect of losing your home.
Reasons for being homeless
Being homeless doesn't just mean living on the streets. You are also legally considered homeless and are entitled to get help to find somewhere to live (or to stay in your home) for a range of reasons including:
- if you have somewhere to live, but you can't stay there because you are worried about your personal safety because of the threat of violence, abuse or harassment (the threat doesn't have to be from someone living at your home, it can include a neighbour or ex-partner)
- if you have somewhere to live, but you can't stay because your home is in very poor condition and a threat to health
- if you have nowhere that you can live together with your family
- if you have been locked out of your home and you are not allowed back
Being evicted by your landlord
If you are facing homelessness because your landlord wants you to leave your house or flat and you do not wish to leave, your landlord must obtain a possession order from a court. The law protects you against harassment and illegal eviction.
If your home is provided as part of your job, this is known as tied accommodation. If you could become homeless because your employment is about to end, you can get advice from housing advice organisations.
You could also contact the Housing Executive, as there may be specific things you need to do to show that you will be homeless, such as providing proof of this from your employer.
Find out about help from the Housing Executive
If you are homeless or likely to become homeless through no fault of your own, the Housing Executive may have to offer you somewhere else to stay or to live. This will depend on your circumstances.
Get help and advice
Acting quickly is important if you are homeless or facing homelessness. The sooner you get help, the more likely you will be able to sort out your debts, find somewhere suitable to live, or prevent a landlord evicting you. The Housing Executive must ensure that advice about homelessness is available to everyone free of charge.
Housing information in other languages
You can find out more about the housing rights of EEA nationals in Northern Ireland by visting the Housing Advice website:
The site is available in English, Polish, Lithuanian, Slovak, Russian and Portuguese. You can learn more about renting privately, homelessness, sharing a home, paying for your accommodation and other issues that affect migrant workers:
- Housing Advice - Polish Language - Housing Rights Service website
- Housing Advice - Lithuanian Language - Housing Rights Service website
- Housing Advice - Slovak Language - Housing Rights Service website
- Housing Advice - Russian Language - Housing Rights Service website
- Housing Advice - Portuguese Language - Housing Rights Service website
More useful links
- Social housing
- Buying, selling and renting a home
- Citizens Advice Northern Ireland (contacts section)
- Housing Advice NI (contacts section)
- Law centre NI (contacts section)
- Managing debt - Money Advice Service website
- Homeless NI website
- Council for the Homeless NI website
- Protection Against Harassment and Illegal Eviction (PDF 591 KB) - DSD website
- Help with PDF files
- Repossession court hearing video - You Tube website