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If you are homeless or concerned about the possibility of losing your home, it is extremely important that you seek advice at the earliest opportunity.

You can get tailored housing advice now.

Visit the Housing Advice website for access the advice.

If you still need further advice and support on preventing or relieving your homelessness you should register on our Homelessness Portal and an officer will contact you as soon as possible. This should be accessed via the Housing Jigsaw website.

Once registered you will be able to log into your account to see the status of your case and will be required to update with relevant documents.

The documents you must provide in order to progress your homelessness application is :

  • proof of your identity for all those presenting as homeless
  • details and evidence of your income
  • 3 months most recent bank statements
  • if you have a child or are expecting a child birth certificates or proof of pregnancy & proof of child benefit
  • if you are renting a home your tenancy agreement and any notice served by the landlord
  • if your home is to be sold confirmation from a solicitor the sale of your property, amount of mortgage outstanding and any capital you are likely to receive
  • legal action to repossess your home any court orders for possession or warrants for bailiffs possession.

We are required to offer advice and assistance to you if you are homeless or at risk of homelessness. However, we do not have a duty to provide accommodation to everyone who is homeless. This will depend on your circumstances.

The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 means that we have duties to prevent and relieve homelessness if you are threatened with homelessness within 56 days or homeless now. We can provide you with advice on your housing options which will include what can be done to prevent you losing your home such as: negotiating with family and friends or landlord to stay longer, ensuring rent owed is paid on time, identify other means to fund accommodation, how to fund deposits, or finding alternative accommodation.

The Housing Solutions team will complete a personalised housing plan with you and will set actions that you and the Council are required to complete.

It also means that you must take action to prevent yourself from becoming homeless or to end your homelessness, and that you must co-operate with any efforts we make to help you.

Download the homelessness strategy

You must normally live in the UK long-term and not be subject to immigration control.

We cannot by law help the following groups, apart from giving advice, as they are not eligible.

  • You are subject to immigration control and have limited rights to be here. (We will check your immigration status and tell the authorities if you are here illegally).
  • You are here from abroad and not able to claim state benefits (you have no access to public funds).
  • You are not normally or 'habitually' resident in the U.K.
  • You are an asylum seeker (You may qualify for temporary accommodation from central government while your claim is considered)

Further information is available on the Shelter website.

You will be required to consent for us to share your details in order to carry out a homeless application. Depending on your circumstances your caseworker may contact:

  • the home office
  • your current and previous employers
  • your current and previous landlords
  • benefit services
  • your children’s schools
  • social services
  • your GP and medical professionals involved in your care
  • credit check
  • previous local authorities you have a connection with or resided in
  • the police and probation services
  • voluntary sectors you may have had contact with.
  • family and friends
  • services such as substance misuse
  • other agencies you may have had contact with.

This list is not final and any other reasonable enquiries for the purposes of assessing your application will be carried out.

We can provide you with advice on your housing or assist you in finding alternative accommodation. However Telford & Wrekin Council do not own any general needs properties so this will involve looking in the private rented sector or you can apply to housing associations yourself. You may be able to move in a planned way without actually becoming homeless. 

You will have to look at all relevant properties that meet your need and this will include flats or shared houses if the property is suitable. For example, if you are entitled to a two bedroom property, you will be put forward for all two bedroom properties including flats. This will be considered suitable accommodation.

You should try to find alternative accommodation yourself by looking with local letting agencies, search engines and local providers, including Rightmove and Zoopla.

To find out how much local housing allowance you are eligible for in order to find a suitable property you can find out by visiting the website:

For local housing allowance please view information about housing benefit.

Anyone identified as rough sleeping in the day time should contact Kip. Visit the Kip website.

Where someone is reporting as Rough Sleeping we encourage clients to contact services in day time hours to ensure that services can support them. Housing Solutions can be called on 01952 381925 to report a rough sleeper. Where someone is reported as rough sleeping, we will request for a STAY Telford Outreach team to visit the client and verify someone is rough sleeping and provide assistance. The aim will be to house the individual into settled accommodation through partnership working with the client to provide the relevant services. This may not include providing emergency accommodation but services will work with the client to provide support and access to longer term accommodation.

You have a local connection if you:

  • have lived in Telford & Wrekin for six out of the last 12 months, or three out of the last five years, or
  • have employment here, or
  • have family associations here. This has to be a close relative such as a parent, brother or sister, or adult child, or
  • have special circumstances, which we would consider on an individual basis.

You do not have a local connection if you have been living Telford & Wrekin in somewhere such as a hospital or at college here etc.

If you do not have local connection with the Telford & Wrekin Council but have one with another local authority, we will refer your application to that council.

If you have a local connection here, and with another council area, we would not be able to refer you elsewhere, so if your preference is to live in that other area, then it would be a good idea to present as homeless to that council.

Certain groups of homeless people are legally defined as being in priority need. These people, and the members of their families, are in the following categories:

  • those with dependent children of their own, or children they are responsible for. A dependent child is one under the age of 18, or under age 19 if in full-time education, and who normally resides with you
  • those who are pregnant or have a member of their family who is pregnant. Proof of pregnancy would be needed
  • those who are homeless because of an emergency such as a serious fire or flood
  • those who are age 18 - 21 and are a former relevant child
  • those who are age 16 or 17
  • those who the Council determine are more vulnerable than the average person
  • those fleeing accommodation due to violence or threats of violence which are likely to be carried out.

You must normally live in the UK long-term and not be subject to immigration control.

We cannot by law help the following groups, apart from giving advice, as they are not eligible.

  • You are subject to immigration control and have limited rights to be here. (We will check your immigration status and tell the authorities if you are here illegally).
  • You are here from abroad and not able to claim state benefits (you have no access to public funds).
  • You are not normally or 'habitually' resident in the U.K.
  • You are an asylum seeker (You may qualify for temporary accommodation from central government while your claim is considered).

Further information is available on the Shelter website.

If the Housing Solutions Officer dealing with your homeless application has enough reason to believe that you may be homeless and in priority need, they should ensure that you have accommodation to occupy until they have completed their enquiries into your application.

This may involve:

  • negotiating with your landlord to allow you to remain beyond your notice date
  • negotiating with your parents / relatives / friends to allow you to remain whilst enquiries are completed
  • asking you whether you have anyone you can stay with on a short term basis.

If you are in priority need and no alternative options can be found, we will then identify emergency accommodation for you, this may be any of the following (depending on need and availability):

  • shared emergency accommodation
  • B&B (this may be out of area depending on availability and you will need to move on a regular basis)
  • temporary accommodation
  • refuge.

To speed up your request for emergency accommodation, we need you to provide the following documents:

  • a copy of a passport or proof of identification for each person in your household
  • immigration papers if you are not a British citizen
  • full birth certificates for any children
  • proof of any state benefits you receive, such as job seekers allowance, family tax credits and child benefit
  • proof of any income or earnings your household may have and details of your spending (this is to assess the cost of any housing offered to you)
  • bank statements for all accounts covering at least the last 3 months
  • copies of any court documents such as a possession order, bailiff's warrant and so on
  • copies of eviction notices, Section 21, a letter asking you to leave, and so on
  • a copy of the tenancy agreement
  • proof you have been living at the address you claim to be homeless from.

The process for assessing your accommodation needs can take up to a day. This may take longer if you do not provide us with enough factual information.

Do you need to pay for temporary accommodation?

Yes, any accommodation provided you will have to pay for. If you are eligible for housing benefit this will apply, however any shortfall will have to be funded by yourseIf you do not make sure the weekly charge is paid in full you will be evicted from your temporary housing. This may result in the Council finding you intentionally homeless. If this happens the Council will not have any obligation to house you and you will have to find your own place to live.

Can I take my pets to temporary accommodation?

No, pets are not permitted at any of our temporary accommodation options.

Will I be asked to move temporary accommodation placements?

Yes, you may be required to move around temporary accommodation if the Council requires that property.

What about my belongings?

If you are homeless you will need to make arrangements to store your furniture and personal belongings. You can arrange storage with a private storage company at your own expense or perhaps friends or relatives will be able to help you.

Being intentionally homeless means that you are homeless because you left accommodation that you could have stayed in or you lost your home as a result or your actions. The council looks into the reasons why you lost your last 'settled home'.

When deciding if you are or aren't intentionally homeless, the council must consider the reasons you became homeless and whether:

  • you did, or failed to do, something that caused you to leave your home
  • the act, or failure to act, was deliberate or you were aware of what was going on
  • it was reasonable for you to continue living in your accommodation.

Some examples of making yourself intentionally homeless include:

  • you decided to leave a property when you didn't have to
  • you could have afforded to pay the rent or mortgage and didn't pay it. We will investigate your financial circumstances
  • you didn't claim housing benefit or renew your claim; you failed to give the benefit section the information about your circumstances that it needed to processed your claim
  • you were evicted for anti-social behaviour
  • you have made yourself homeless to try to get housed more quickly.

If the council decides you are intentionally homeless

If the council decides that you intentionally caused your homelessness, you will be given this decision in writing.

The Council would only have a duty, if you are in priority need, to provide temporary accommodation for a limited, short term period so that you could make arrangements to find somewhere else to live. After assessing your needs, we would give you appropriate advice and assistance to do this.

If you have children, we will also refer your case to social services.

If you are eligible, in priority need and not intentionally homeless, the council will provide you with temporary accommodation if this is needed and we will provide an offer of a longer term home. Your offer of accommodation may be provided by:

  • offer of social housing (note Telford & Wrekin do not own their own general needs accommodation)
  • private rented sector offer.

The council cannot guarantee exactly when an offer will be made. We also cannot guarantee where the offer will be, as vacant properties are in short supply.

If the council feels that any property offered to you is suitable for your needs and that you are being unreasonable in refusing it, then we are under no obligation to offer you another property and we will end our duty to you.

Last updated: 29/02/2024 12:22

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