On 25 March 2020, the Council received information that the Government are increasing LHA rates effective from 06 April 2020 due to COVID-19.
We are urgently working to make sure that our customers affected by this announcement have their claims altered as soon as we can. If you are in receipt of Housing Benefit and you are subject to LHA rules (see more information below), we will send you a letter that will detail any changes to your Housing Benefit from 06 April 2020.
We would very much appreciate if you would bear with us whilst we undertake this urgent work.
Please find more information below regarding LHA and please note that LHA direct online has not been updated with these new figures as at 25 March 2020.
If you are renting a property or room from a private landlord and you are on a low income, you may be able to claim and receive Local Housing Allowance (LHA).
What is Local Housing Allowance?
Local Housing Allowance is a new way of working out Housing Benefit for people who rent accommodation from a private landlord. It was introduced in April 2008. It applies to new claims for benefit and for customers already on Housing Benefit who change address or move into privately rented accommodation.
If you live in council accommodation or other social housing, such as a housing association, LHA will not affect you unless you move into accommodation rented from a private landlord.
How does Local Housing Allowance work?
The amount of LHA is based on the area that the customer rents in, the number of occupiers in the property and the size of the household. LHA is a fairer way of calculating Housing Benefit, as it ensures that tenants with similar circumstances and living in the same area receive the same amount help with their rent.
How do these changes affect those already on Housing Benefit?
If you are already on Housing Benefit, you will not be affected unless you change address and move into accommodation rented from a private landlord. You would then change over to LHA.
How is Local Housing Allowance calculated?
The Rent Service calculate LHA rates for each individual area or ‘Broad Market Rental Areas’, as they are known. The rates vary for each area and also depend on the number of bedrooms in the property. The rates are reviewed monthly.
To work out the maximum LHA rates you need to know:
1) Which bedroom rate you qualify for.
2) The (Broad Market Rental) Area that you will be renting in.
Which bedroom rate do I qualify for?
This is not the number of bedrooms in the property but the number of bedrooms your household actually needs. Follow the link to find out how many bedrooms you qualify for:
Local Housing Allowance Bedroom Calculator .
How much is the LHA Bedroom rate for my Postcode?
You can find out which Broad Market Rental Area you are renting in by using the Post Code search facility on the attached link. Also, by selecting the number of bedrooms you qualify for, you can view the maximum LHA rate that applies.
Find Local Housing Allowance rates by Post Code .
How much will I actually get?
The LHA rates are the maximum benefit you can receive. Remember that LHA is a means tested benefit and that you may get less than the maximum allowance. This will depend on the money you have coming in and any savings you have.
If the rent is more than the allowance you receive, you will have to pay the difference or look for alternative accommodation.
For an estimate of your entitlement you can use our benefits calculator (Please note, all our forms are compatible with Internet Explorer and Safari, however you may experience issues when using other browsers).
Where are the rates published?
The current LHA rates for the Broad Market Rental Areas in Flintshire can be found online at https://lha-direct.voa.gov.uk/Search.aspx