Local Housing Allowance (LHA)

Page last updated at 05 November 2015 at 16:20

LHA is a way of working out Housing Benefit for private tenants.

If you are renting a property or room from a private landlord, Local Housing Allowance is used as part of the calculation to work out how much Housing Benefit you get.

Your personal rate of LHA will depend on where you live and who lives with you.  You can calculate how many bedroom you are eligible for here. Benefit is based on the number of bedrooms you need and not how much the rent is.

LHA rates are set for different types of accommodation in each area. The rates range from a single room in a shared house, up to properties with four bedrooms.

The rates that are set are the maximum amounts, the actual amount of entitlement will depend on your income, savings and other circumstances and these rates are set from April each year and will remain the same until the following April.

You can choose accommodation, knowing how much rent we will use to work out your benefit, from the LHA rates set by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).  You can search for the LHA rates here

LHA applies to anyone who lives in private rented accommodation and has made a new claim for Housing Benefit.

LHA does not affect you if:

  • you are a tenant of a registered social landlord (housing association), registered charity or voluntary organisation; or
  • you live in supported housing; or
  • your tenancy started before 15 January 1989; or
  • you live in a caravan, mobile home, houseboat or hostel; or
  • you claim benefit for help with mooring fees; or
  • the Rent Officer has decided that a large part of the rent you pay for your tenancy is for meals cooked for you.