Shelter

Help for those needing housing and emergency rehousing.

  • An article 100% donated by an enthusiastic Shelter representative. I’m afraid I can’t guarantee that these suggestions apply to your exact situation or that the provision hasn’t changed since the information was donated to Superkey’s WordPress.

How to find housing help….

Hello Shelter ….I noticed rough sleepers nearby my home

@ShelterHello, and thank you for getting in touch. If you are homeless, I’m sorry to hear about this; it must be a very difficult time. If you’re asking on behalf of someone else, the same sentiments apply, and you’re very welcome to give them our contact details in case they’re able to provide more information which may be useful.

Having no local connection doesn’t always prevent you from accessing help, but as you’re probably aware some services will only provide support to those who have links to an area. In many cases this depends on their own policies, which may not always be clear until you get in touch with them. The options available will also depend on your broader circumstances, such as whether you’re alone or have someone else with you, your general state of health, and what happened to cause you to become homeless.

For the time being I’ll assume you’re in relatively good physical and mental health, and you’re only seeking help for yourself. The first thing we’d usually suggest is making a homelessness application to the local council. Even though they probably do not have a duty to accommodate you (which will be the case if you’re single and in reasonably good health), the council may be able to help you find other accommodation, and will have a 56-day duty to ‘relieve’ homelessness regardless of whether you have a local connection. This could involve referring you to accommodation providers, helping you look for accommodation or providing financial help, amongst other things. You can read more about the process on the following link: https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/homelessness/guide/homeless_get_help_from_the_council/how_the_council_can_help…

You can read our advice about how to apply as homeless and search for the contact details of the council’s homelessness team here: https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/homelessness/guide/get_help_from_your_council_when_homeless/how_to_apply_as_homeless…

If the council can’t accommodate you, we have some information about emergency housing options here: https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/homelessness/temporary_housing_if_youre_homeless…

You may be able to get a space in a hostel or nightshelter. You need a referral to get into many hostels, and some will require a local connection, especially in London, but there may be a hostel in your area that you can approach directly who will allow you to stay. These are known as ‘direct access’ hostels.

You can read more about how to get into a hostel here: https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/homelessness/temporary_housing_if_youre_homeless/hostels… You can search for hostels and various other homelessness services in your area by using the Homeless Link website here: https://homeless.org.uk/search-homelessness-services…

If you’re street homeless, you can also contact @Streetlink who gather details about people who are street homeless and where they are sleeping. This may result in you being connected to local services and support. Here’s their website: https://streetlink.org.uk There may also be financial support available to help secure somewhere more long-term to live.

For many people, renting somewhere from a private landlord is often the quickest way to find a home. I appreciate this can be expensive and the options will be limited by what’s affordable. We have some information about the costs involved in private renting, as well as assistance available to help meet these costs here: https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/private_renting/costs_of_private_renting…

If you’re struggling to afford the upfront costs of renting, such as a deposit, you can check to see if there’s a local scheme that may be able to assist. You can read our advice on rent deposit and bond schemes here: https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/private_renting/rent_deposit,_bond_and_guarantee_schemes… The above page includes a link to the Crisis website where you can search for any help that may be available in your area.

You could get in touch with a local organisation such as Citizens Advice or the council to see if they can apply for a grant from the Vicar’s Relief Fund (VRF) on your behalf. The VRF is a homelessness prevention fund where small grants may be given in times of urgent need. You can read more about the VRF here: https://smitf.flexigrant.com **Please be aware you cannot contact the charity directly to request a grant.**

You may also want to visit the Turn 2 Us website to see if you qualify for a grant from any charities or other organisations. You can find out more by visiting their website: https://turn2us.org.uk I hope this information is useful and gives you a few options to try. If you have more questions or need further support, please get in touch with one of our specialist housing advisers: https://england.shelter.org.uk/get_help Thanks again for getting in touch, and very best wishes. Kind regards, Andy @ Shelter2:40 pm

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