Housing Benefit cannot be paid for all of your rent if your rent includes an amount towards some service charges for your property. Some service charges are covered by Housing Benefit and some are not:
Service charges you can claim for
Service charges that you have to pay to occupy your home will be counted as part of your eligible rent for Housing Benefit calculation purposes if they are related to the provision of adequate accommodation. Examples of service charges that may be included in your eligible rent for Housing Benefit calculation purposes are:
- cleaning of communal areas. These are defined as areas (other than rooms) with common access (including halls and passageways) and rooms of common use in sheltered accommodation
- connection to a radio or television system (except satellite and cable relay systems) in specified circumstances
- other services such as those provided by caretakers which relate to the provision of adequate accommodation.
- children’s play areas
This list is not exhaustive; other service charges may be included in your eligible rent.
Service charges you cannot claim for
Examples of charges that cannot be included in your eligible rent are charges for:
- meals or groceries
- personal laundry
- cleaning of rooms and windows (other than communal areas) unless neither you nor any member of your household can do it
- leisure items like recreation facilities (but payments for children’s play areas are allowed)
- television rental and license fee (but the cost of television and radio aerials may be allowed).
Housing Benefit cannot help with fuel charges for your home. If your rent includes an amount for gas, electric or oil, this service charge will not be paid by Housing Benefit.
West Lindsey District Council
Guildhall, Marshall’s Yard