Local Housing Allowance

About Local Housing Allowance

Local Housing Allowance (LHA) is a way of working out new claims for Housing Benefit for people on a low income who rent from private landlords.

It also affects tenants already getting Housing Benefit who move into accommodation rented from a private landlord. 

If you live in Council accommodation or other social housing, Local Housing Allowance will not affect you.

Why has Local Housing Allowance been introduced?

Local Housing Allowance gives tenants more choice in where they live and it's fairer too. This is because with Local Housing Allowance:

  • you will be entitled to the same amount of benefit as people in the same circumstances as you
  • you can find out how much benefit you can get before you rent a property
  • you can decide how much of your benefit you want to spend on renting a property
  • you will usually get your benefit paid to you. It is up to you to pay the rent to your landlord
  • you will find out about your benefit more quickly than before

Paying your rent

Usually you will have your Local Housing Allowance paid directly to you. It is up to you to pay your landlord. If you don't pay your rent you may be evicted from the property.

If you do not already have one you may want to set up a bank account. That way you can pay the rent to your landlord by standing order or direct debit.

You can get advice about opening and running a bank account from any bank or building society of your choice.

We have a leaflet on basic bank accounts with a list of local bank and building societies to help you.

If you are worried about managing your money, ask us if we can help.

In special cases we may be able to pay your rent to your landlord. You can also get advice from the Citizens Advice Bureaux in Midlothian.

LHA Rates from April 2013 to March 2014


 Shared  One Bedroom  Two Bedrooms  Three Bedrooms Four or more Bedrooms
 Lothian  £66.92  £114.23  £138.46  £184.62  £276.92

Citizens Advice Bureau

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Free help and advice.

6-8 Buccleuch St
Dalkeith
Midlothian
EH22 1HA

0131 660 1636 (tel)