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Working out your Local Housing Allowance

To work out how much benefit you might get you need to:

Work out how many bedrooms you're entitled to and which Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rate applies to you - this is shown below

Check the Local Housing Allowance rates we pay for Cambridge.

The amount of benefit you can get may be affected by:

  • any money you have coming in
  • any savings you have
  • how much your rent is
  • if we expect anyone living with you to pay towards your rent
  • if you share paying the rent with someone else who isn't your partner

Number of bedrooms you're entitled to

The number of people who live with you is used to work out how many bedrooms you're entitled to.

The number of bedrooms you're entitled to is then used to work out which Local Housing Allowance rate applies.

We don't count other rooms such as a living room, kitchen or bathroom.

In some cases, there are extra rules that apply (details below).

Use the following information as a guide or use the bedroom calculator on the Direct Gov website.

You're entitled to one bedroom for:

  • every adult couple (married or unmarried)
  • any other adult aged 16 or over
  • any two children of the same sex aged under 16
  • any two children aged under 10
  • any other child.

Example 1: Susan

  • Susan is a single mother who has three children, Tom (aged 14), Judy (aged 11) and Raymond (aged 6).
  • Susan is entitled to three bedrooms - one for herself, one for Judy and one for Tom and Raymond to share.
  • We will work out benefit using the LHA rate for three bedrooms.

Example 2: Lisa and Matt

  • Lisa and Matt are a couple who have five children, Shaun (aged 17), Graham (aged 15), Laura (aged 12), Millie (aged 9) and Jessica (aged 6).
  • They're entitled to four bedrooms - one for themselves, one for Shaun, one for Laura and Millie to share, one for Graham and one for Jessica.
  • We will work out benefit using the LHA rate for four bedrooms (the highest LHA rate is four bedrooms - even if the family require 5 bedrooms).

Extra rules that might affect the Local Housing Allowance rate

There are extra rules if you're:

Non-dependants

If you claim benefit you can only get it for yourself and your family. If you share a property with someone who isn't part of your family, your benefit may be reduced. This is because we may expect them to pay towards your rent.

For more information about this, please get in touch with us.

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