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Claiming Housing Benefit or Council Tax Reduction

Making a Housing Benefit or Council Tax Reduction claim

We can only process applications for new claims from residents living in the area covered by Middlesbrough Council. No further action will be taken on claims for addresses outside the area. To check that your address falls into this local authority, please use the GOV.UK postcode checker.

Which benefit should I claim?

If you live in Middlesbrough and you need help with paying your rent, you can apply for Housing Benefit or Universal Credit. Which one you should apply for will depend on your circumstances, and may also depend on the circumstances of people living with you.

You can find out whether you should apply for Housing Benefit or Universal Credit by answering the following questions.

1. Are you of state pension age*?

Find out about state pension age on GOV.UK.

YES, you should claim Housing Benefit

NO, go to question 2

*If you’re part of a couple where one member is above state pension age and the other is below state pension age, you'll need to claim Universal Credit.

2. Do you live in supported or temporary accommodation?

YES, you should claim Housing Benefit (even if you're getting Universal Credit)

NO, go to question 3

3. Are you already getting Housing Benefit and have moved to a new address in Middlesbrough?

YES, you should carry on claiming Housing Benefit. Report a change of circumstances.

NO, you may be eligible for Universal Credit. Apply for Universal Credit via GOV.UK.

If you’re struggling to pay your rent, you could apply for a discretionary housing payment.


You may qualify for Housing Benefit or Council Tax Reduction depending on:

  • your income
  • any savings you may have
  • the size of your household
  • any non-dependants living at the address

You can use the GOV.UK benefits calculators to check your potential entitlement to Housing Benefit, however this is only an estimate and not a guarantee of the amount you'll receive.