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Housing and homelessness

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Cost of living support

If you need housing and homelessness support and are struggling with the cost of living, the following services and organisations might be able to assist you.

Remember - if you are struggling, you are not alone and there is no shame in asking for help. Everyone needs a little bit of extra support at some point in their lives. 


At risk of becoming homeless

If you're looking for somewhere to live or worried about losing your accommodation it's important to talk to the council as soon as possible.

The council can:

  • help you find a home (social or private)
  • help you with private rented accommodation by working with you and your landlord to resolve any tenancy issues (benefit problems, legal notices or poor housing conditions)
  • check to see if you're eligible for a deposit guarantee (a written agreement in place of a cash deposit) to help you into private rented accommodation
  • check to see if you're eligible for any housing benefits to help pay part or all of your rent
  • help you deal with legal issues if your landlord has applied for a possession order
  • talk to your friends and relatives if they've asked you to leave your accommodation
  • make referrals to supported accommodation
  • give you advice about local support and services if you're sleeping rough

Phone          01752 305496




Council Tax - discounts and exemptions

If you are struggling to pay your Council Tax, check if you can claim: 

  • Single person discount: If you are the only adult living in your property, you can apply for a single person discount of 25% off your bill. 
  • Student exemptions and discounts: If you are a full-time student you may be eligible for a discount on your Council Tax bill
  • Discounts for disabled people: You might be able to get a Council Tax discount if you or someone who lives with you has a disability
  • Other Council Tax discounts and exemptions: You may be entitled to a discount because you or others who are living with you are not counted when calculating the amount of the Council Tax due (for example, care leavers, carers or apprentices). If everyone who lives in the household is not counted, then you may be able to get a further discount or exemption. 

Council Tax Support is a local means-tested scheme for people on low incomes or claiming benefits such as Universal Credit, to help them pay their Council Tax. Any owner-occupier or tenant aged 18 or over who is legally responsible for the Council Tax can claim Council Tax Support. If you get Council Tax Support but still have to pay some Council Tax, then check if you are eligible for an exceptional hardship payment

Consider paying your Council Tax by direct debit as this gives you a choice of payment dates.  

If you are not eligible for discounts or support and are still struggling to pay, you can apply for a payment arrangement

Phone          01752 668000



Council Tax Support scheme

Council Tax Support is a local means-tested scheme for people on low incomes to help them pay their Council Tax. Any owner-occupier or tenant aged 18 or over who is legally responsible for the Council Tax can claim Council Tax Support.

It takes the council on average 21 days to process a new Council Tax Support claim. This may be quicker if you provide all the evidence as soon as possible.

Phone          01752 668000



Discretionary housing payments

Discretionary Housing Payments (DHPs) are extra payments if you need help with rent or housing costs.

DHPs can be used to pay your rent, removal costs or rent in advance.

You can apply for a DHP if you currently receive either Housing Benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit and you need more financial support with housing costs.

Phone          01752 668000



Housing benefits

Housing Benefit can help you to pay your rent if you are unemployed, on a low income or claiming benefits.

For most people Housing Benefit has been replaced by Universal Credit.

If you need help to pay your Council Tax you will still need to claim Council Tax Support.

Phone          01752 668000



Disabled facilities grants

A Disabled Facilities Grant can help with:

  • Stairlifts
  • Level access showers
  • Widening doors
  • Installing ramps
  • Through the floor lifts
  • Adapting heating/lighting facilities
  • Safe access to gardens

Phone          01752 668000



Reducing your water bill 

If you're struggling to pay your water bill, then there is help available from South West Water.

You can also find useful advice about how to save water, which may also help reduce your bill.  



Cheaper broadband and phone packages 

If you claim Universal Credit, Pension Credit or certain other benefits, you could claim cheaper broadband and phone packages known as 'social tariffs'.

These are cheaper than a regular package, typically around £10 to £20 a month, and come with small or no setup costs.



Grants for the Armed Forces community

In response to the increasing cost of living, the Royal British Legion has launched Everyday Needs Grants, providing up to £2,400 over 12 months for members of the Armed Forces community.

The grants programme aims to help with everyday essentials, such as kitchen appliances, clothes and energy costs. It's open to anyone who is eligible for Royal British Legion support, which includes serving personnel or those who have previously served.

Find out more and apply on the Royal British Legion website.


Help paying for pets

If you are a pet owner and are struggling to cope with the cost of food or healthcare, the RSPCA has shared useful information and advice.


Find out what benefits and financial support you may be able to get

Use the government's online tool to find out what support you might be able to get to help with your living costs. You can get benefits and other financial support if you're eligible.

Check what benefits and financial support you can get

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How to submit an organisation or community group to this website

If you are an organisation or community group and can help support people living in Plymouth, please complete our online form and we will add you to this directory.

Submit your offer of help and support 

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