I really need to move out - How can I do that? — Scope | Disability forum
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I really need to move out - How can I do that?

Owlsie Member Posts: 4 Listener
edited December 2021 in Universal Credit (UC)
Hi, I have been claiming universal credit for a while now, I'm on the enhanced rate for disability (not sure if that's the right name) but only get the living component.

I live with my parents rent free but... I have dissociative identity disorder, something that was caused by them. I'm 27 and still captive in my home (my fiance also lives with me) Things are getting really bad here, my health is declining and I feel stuck. I want to get the housing element of Universal Credit but all the information online says that you can't get it if you are living with a relative. I want to move out. I need to move out. I can't find any information on how to make this possible? I can't afford rent on just the daily living component but I can't get the housing element until I have I house.. it doesn't make sense to me. Any help would be appreciated. I feel I'm at rock bottom and getting away from my abusive parents is necessary.

 I really don't want to go to a shelter or tell anyone that they are abusive because I can't have any officials talking to them. 


  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,608 Disability Gamechanger
    Your daily living award of PIP is separate to your UC payment. To be able claim the housing element of UC you must first find somewhere to live, once you've moved into the property then you can claim the housing element of UC and you will need your tenancy agreement to be able to do this.

    Finding a place to live while claiming benefits can be very very difficult. A lot of landlords and agencies will not rent to those claiming benefits. If they do agree then very often a guarantor is needed. Social housing registers are extremely long and have waiting lists of several years across most of the country.

    For privately rented property you will also need to find 1 months rent in advance plus the bond, which is usually the same as 1 months rent. All agencies charge a fee which can be anything from £200. It's very expensive and can amount to well over £1000 depending on what property you rent. For privately rented property then maybe a search of what's available in your area that accept DSS (benefits) Gumtree sometimes have them but do be careful using this because of scammers. Local letting agencies in your area may accept DSS, some areas will and others refuse. It really depends on your area.
  • Owlsie
    Owlsie Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Yes sorry, I have PIP and LCWRA.

    We are lucky that my finances parents are willing to be a guarantor and will probably cover the extra costs.

    So basically I find somewhere to live, get the costs sorted, make sure the landlord is OK with benefits and they will definitely give me the housing element?

    There is no way I can look for work. So this can be the only way. I don't understand how people do it.

    Thank you for your help, its given me a lot to think about! 
  • NY19
    NY19 Member Posts: 14 Connected
    Yes, when it says you can't get it if you're living with relatives, it means you can't claim it to pay rent to/for your relatives. But as poppy123456 says, you have to actually move out first, and then claim the money. It's a really bad system and there's no way around it that I know of.

    I think you could safely talk to someone at Shelter without any "authorities" being involved, and it would be a good idea as they can give you expert advice on finding a new home. I assume you have spoken to your GP/psychiatrist about your situation as well??

    By the way, I have previously lived in a privately rented flat and did NOT have to pay any agent fees - I found the flat online and dealt directly with the landlord who had a large number of properties. Depending on where you live this might be possible.

  • Topkitten
    Topkitten Member Posts: 1,285 Pioneering
    The difficulties shown will make it complicated and you cannot move out and deliberately make yourself homeless and then get the benefit. You MUST have a good reason. If you won't use your parents as the reason you are ill then you have very few options. All you can really do is save like crazy and get into private rent and once that is done then you can apply but, as has been said, there are many difficulties and it really does depend on where you live.

    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • Owlsie
    Owlsie Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Thank you for all of your information, it has helped me a lot. Benefits are really complicated!! 

    Shelter is a good idea, thank you
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,608 Disability Gamechanger
    Being able to claim for housing before you move into a property was never possible even before it became UC. Having rented myself privately for many years it's difficult. Yes you do get landlords the rent to DSS claimants and who won't charge you any fees but this will depend on the area you live. There's some areas that are more difficult than others.

    @Owlsie My advice would be to pop both of your details into a benefit calculator to see what housing element you'll be entitled to. Also remember that Council Tax reduction isn't part of UC and has to be claimed separately from your local council.
  • Ripples
    Ripples Member Posts: 189 Pioneering
    @Owlsie The advice you have been given is good and worth following. One thing I should point out before you seek private property is to be aware that you will only be paid for a one bedroom property as a couple. You should also find out your LHA ( Local Housing Authority), rates which shows the maximum amount they will give you per week towards housing.
    Although not easy to get these days social housing registers as kept by the council and Housing Associations is another avenue to explore. You may qualify to be put on the register for housing but it is a long wait for many. 
  • xalexthealienx
    xalexthealienx Member Posts: 1 Listener
    I was in somewhat the same situation. My parents weren’t abusive or anything, but incredibly toxic and detrimentally bad for my mental health that I had been suffering from my whole life. I was always told by then the stuff I could probably never do- with one of them be to live alone. I got diagnosed with Autism, ADHD, anxiety, BPD, OCD and other mental health struggles at different points through my teens, and I’m now 22. I didn’t have friends, and I was, and still am, in a long distance relationship with an Australian. My aim was, and still is, to eventually move over there. But then covid hit and my plans for travelling abroad have been halted for the foreseeable future. But I had put all my eggs into that basket. I thought I would of been in Australia by now, I didn’t want to have to spend any more days, weeks or months with my parents. So I signed up to Rightmove and impulsively enquired about every place that I liked. I am also on enhanced PIP & LCWRA, and i quickly found out the struggle of moving out when relying on nothing other than benefits. And I also quickly learnt how fast an estate agent or landlord will put the phone down on you the second you say you can’t provide a homeowner guarantor. As selfish as it sounds now, but back then I felt like I was being punished for being born into a lower class family, where although everyone is hard-working, no one has ever had the spare funds to put a deposit down to own their own house. I live on the border of two counties, and was able to register to two different councils for housing, hoping that would of been a better option. But I was thrown into band E on both of them, even after stating how living at home was severely effecting my mental health. For months my head was battered and I felt like there was no end or escape. I felt like I was fighting a battle I couldn’t win. But then when I was about to give up, in the soppy story-book fashion kinda way, I got one last call from one estate agent company I hadn’t heard of. The guy on the phone asked if I was still interested in the property I asked about weeks prior. I had applied after so many that I couldn’t remember for the life of me where it was, but I agreed to a last minute viewing that next morning. I had no idea where it was and no one was willing to take me- so 3 trains and a confusing google map lead walk later I met the guy outside this newly-built apartment complex. I looked up and around in awe. “There was no way this place would accept me without a guarantor” i said to myself. The man showed me around all 60 newly built apartments, in a place that I could only describe as a hotel. He was happy to twitter on about how each one has ‘bespoke fully fitted kitchens with all top of the range white goods provided’, some were furnished, some unfurnished, and I was happy to let his talk, and I was happy to listen. I have always been someone who enjoys the very Americanised modern all-white ‘in the city centre’ style of appartments that you see in the movies. And this was exactly that. The voice in the back of my head told me to just leave, before I fell more in love. But I stayed. At the end of the tour I told him they were lovely, but it was a shame I couldn’t live there, as I have no guarantor. He laughed and told me that because I was on PIP and LCWRA, different rules applied. He explained that I wasn’t ‘unemployed’, I was unable to be employed. His policy was that any estate agents who saw it differently were discriminating against disabled people. That was the best news I heard in months. I literally cried happy tears. I had to fill in a lot more forms then anyone else. But now, I live in my apartment of my dreams. And I’m so thankful. now when I do see my parents, it’s kinda nice. I don’t have to deal with their day-to-day bull anymore. And I enjoy my limited time with them, and they have learnt to appreciate me more. I know this post was like, 3 years ago, it just tugged on my heart strings and wanted to share my story. I hope you have by now moved out, I hope you sorted out your universal credit too. I had some difficulty with that, due to the fact I moved into a private rented property and universal credit have a different policy for that, but since you are on pip, I don’t think it would have effected you all that much. I hope your partners family were able to support you, and I’m glad you had that support. As from someone who did it all alone, you need all the support you can get. Best wishes to you all this holiday season x
  • Alex_Scope
    Alex_Scope Posts: 2,573

    Scope community team

    Hi @xalexthealienx thanks so much for sharing your story here on the forum, I'm sure a lot of our members will be pleased to read it!

    I'm really glad you've been able to find somewhere to live more independently, there always seems to be so many barriers when you're disabled, but this shows that with the right support, it is possible. 

    Wishing you a Merry Christmas and New Year, and you're more than welcome to join in with other discussions or start your own here in the community. Let us know if you need a hand with anything, we're here to help.

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