Housing Benefit and Rate Relief for homeowners

Homeowners who are pensioners or get a Severe Disability Premium can apply for Housing Benefit and Rate Relief to help pay all or some of their rates. Land & Property Services is in charge of the rate relief scheme for homeowners.

Homeowners who can apply

There are two different qualifying criteria for new Housing Benefit and Rate Relief claims, depending if you are working age or state pension age.

If both you and your partner (if you have one) have reached pension age you must:

  • not have capital over £50k.

If you or your partner are of working age you must:

  • be an owner occupier
  • already get a benefit that includes Severe Disability Premium
  • not be in a co-ownership or rental buy scheme
  • not have capital over £16,000
  • not already get Housing Benefit and Rate Relief from the Housing Executive (NIHE)
  • not already get Universal Credit

Receiving Universal Credit

You can't claim Housing Benefit and Rate Relief to help pay your rates if you're of working age and can claim or already get Universal Credit.  You must apply for Rate Rebate if you want help paying your rates.

Homeowners already receiving other allowances

If you are entitled to other allowance schemes for rates, such as Disabled Person’s Allowance (DPA) or Lone Pensioner’s Allowance (LPA), LPS will consider this when assessing your application for Housing Benefit and Rate Relief. Housing Benefit and Rate Relief are means-tested and depend on your income.

Your income and household

To assess your application for Housing Benefit and Rate Relief, LPS needs information about your income and household circumstances. They’ll ask about:

  • you and your partner, if you have one
  • your children or anyone  living with you
  • anyone you share ownership of the property with, other than your partner
  • you and your partner’s income, including any benefits you already receive as wages,  grants, pensions (from your former employer), or any income you receive from  additional property or land you own
  • capital you and your partner have in stocks, shares, bank, building society  or savings accounts

Applying for Housing Benefit and Rate Relief

To apply for Housing Benefit and Rate Relief as a homeowner, you must complete an application form and send the form to Land & Property Services (LPS), along with supporting documents.

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