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Help with housing, and council tax

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Help with housing, and council tax

The schemes and services below can help you get back on track with rent, save money on your council tax and make sure that you are claiming everything that you are entitled to housing-wise.

Berneslai Homes Tenants First

Are you in a council property looked after by Berneslai homes? 

You may be able to get support from Tenants First. They can help with money management advice and support: 

    • If you are behind with your rent, and need help to get back on track
    • If you need help completing online applications for Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support
    • If you need help with your family budget 
    • If you need help with rent charges due to under occupation sometimes known as ‘bedroom tax’
    • If you are having issues with Universal Credit

    You can self-refer for tenancy support by emailing 

    Find out more

    Visit the Berneslai Homes Tenants First Website 

    Discretionary Housing Payments

    If you claim Universal Credit or Housing Benefit but are still struggling to pay your rent, BMBC might be able to offer you a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP).

    This is a short term payment that can sometimes be awarded to help cover rent. You don't have an automatic right to a DHP, and not everyone who applies will get one, but they will consider all applications.

    BMBC takes into account: 
    • your income
    • your outgoings
    • your personal circumstances
    • if you’ve had a DHP before and what you’ve done to improve your financial situation
    Find out more:
    You can read more about DHPs and apply online here 

    The council only has a limited amount to spend on DHPs each year. Once it's gone, they can't make any further awards.

    Council Tax Support

    If you’re on a low income, you may be able to claim Council Tax Support to help you pay your Council Tax bill. This reduces your bill in the same way other discounts do (like single person discount).

    To claim Council Tax Support you need to:

    • be the person responsible for paying the Council Tax bill (rented property or your own home).
    • be on a low income - whether it's from paid work, benefits or a pension.

    and have between you and your partner

    • less than £10,000 in savings if you're working age
    • less than £16,000 in savings if you're pensionable age (unless you receive the Guarantee Credit part of Pension Credit)

    Find out more

    Check if you are eligible and apply online here

    Council Tax Discretionary Relief

    Council Tax Discretionary Relief is an extra payment which can help towards reducing your Council Tax bill. BMBC looks at each request for Council Tax Discretionary Relief on a case by case basis.

    When making a decision they'll look at all of the following:

    • Your income and how this compares to other people in a similar situation.
    • Your savings if you have any. 
    • The difference between any Council Tax reduction you receive and your payments.
    • If your accommodation is suitable for your needs.
    • If your property is empty, the reason it why can't be sold or let.
    • If there is anyone in your household who is able to help you.
    • Any loans or debts you may have.
    • If it's reasonable that you could manage your money better.
    • If you've tried to put the situation right yourself.
    • If a major incident has occurred that has forced you out of your home.

    Find out more:

    For more information, including how to apply visit the Council Tax Discretionary Relief web page. 

    Council Tax Discounts

    Have you checked if you are eligible for a Council Tax Discount? 

    More people are eligible than you might think, here are a few examples of who might be eligible. 

    • If you live in a property on your own, you can apply for a single person discount to your Council Tax bill. This will reduce it by 25%.
    • Full time students and student nurses can apply for a student discount.
    • Barnsley care leavers are entitled to 100% Council Tax discount. You can receive this discount even if you don't live in the Barnsley area. The 100% discount will apply until you become 25.
    • If you've had to adapt your home because someone living there has a disability, you may be able to get a Council Tax discount. 
    • If you are having structural work or major repairs done in your home, you can apply for a 25% discount for up to 12 months 

    Find out more:

    For full details of who is eligible and to apply visit the BMBC Council Tax Discount web page or ring 01226 787787 lines open Monday to Friday 9am to 4pm (excluding bank holidays)