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Charges, ground rent and other housing costs

You may be able to get additional help with the costs associated with housing, such as service charges and ground rent (in Scotland these might be called factoring and ground annual or 'feu' duty).

Service charges covers essentials such as management fees, insurance, minor repairs and the cleaning of communal areas. However, the following types of charge cannot be included:

  • water charges;
  • charges for day-to-day living expenses such as meals and laundry, heating, lighting or hot water; and
  • charges to cover major repairs and improvements (though loans to meet the cost of essential repairs and improvements can qualify for help with the interest on that loan).
  • insurance and other costs associated with your home;
  • charges met by your local authority under the Supporting People scheme;

Crown tenants who cannot get Housing Benefit to help with rent payments can claim their full rent minus any fuel or other service charges included in the main charge.

The amount claimed for housing costs can be reduced if other people (excluding their partner) normally live with the client. For more information see deductions for non-dependants.