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About applying for financial help towards your rent and council tax bill

This page explains how to apply for financial help towards your rent (housing benefit or universal credit) and your council tax bill (local council tax support).

We have launched a new online application process for housing benefits and local council tax support. If you have any feedback on the new online process we'd love to hear your views - please contact the team.

You will first need to check whether you need to apply for universal credit or housing benefits for help towards your rent.

If you receive housing benefit, or the housing cost element of Universal Credit, and you are struggling to pay your bills you can also ask us to consider giving you extra help, known as discretionary housing payments.

Read the sections below to find out which one you need to apply for:

1. Should I apply for universal credit?  

You will need to apply for universal credit for financial help towards your rent if:

  • You are not of state pension age
  • You do not live in supported accommodation - find out more
  • You do not live in temporary council homeless accommodation
  • You do not receive child benefit for three children or more
  • Or you live in one of the following postcode areas: B74 4, B75 5, B77 3, B78 2, B78 3, B79 0, B79 8, B79 9, DE13 7, WS7 0, WS7 1, WS7 2, WS7 3, WS7 9, WS13 6, WS13 7, WS13 8, WS14 0, WS14 4, WS14 9, WS15 3.

If you apply/have applied for universal credit and would also like help towards your council tax bill, you will need to also apply to us for local council tax support - this in addition to your application for universal credit. Find out about how to apply for universal credit and local council tax support.

2. Or, should I apply for housing benefit?

You will need to apply to us for housing benefit for financial help towards your rent if:

  • You are of state pension age
  • You live in supported accommodation - find out more
  • You live in temporary council homeless accommodation
  • You receive child benefit for three children or more
  • Or you do not live in one of the following post code areas: B74 4, B75 5, B77 3, B78 2, B78 3, B79 0, B79 8, B79 9, DE13 7, WS7 0, WS7 1, WS7 2, WS7 3, WS7 9, WS13 6, WS13 7, WS13 8, WS14 0, WS14 4, WS14 9, WS15 3.

You can apply for help towards your council tax bill (local council tax support) at the same time as you apply for housing benefit - within the same online form. Find out how to apply for housing benefit and local council tax support.

I already receive housing benefit/universal credit - can I apply for help with my council tax bill?

If you already receive help towards your rent (through housing benefit or universal credit), you can also apply to us for help towards the cost of your council tax bill (local council tax support). Find out more.

I already receive local council tax support - can I apply for help towards my rent?

If you already receive help towards the cost of your council tax bill (local council tax support), you can still apply for help towards your rent. Find out more.


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Our location and travel details >>

Phone our contact centre: 01543 308 000
District Council House, Frog Lane, Lichfield, Staffs, WS13 6YY

If you need to contact a team direct, please visit our contacts page for team phone numbers and email addresses.

Opening times

Our main reception at Frog Lane in Lichfield is open Monday - Friday, 8.45am - 5.15pm. Our phone lines close at 5pm.