Council pay rent to me direct?

Four months in, tenants have split up. Lady remaining is now DSS having previously been private rental. She was 4 days late paying rent last month. Will the council pay me direct instead to prevent this happening? I have phoned them to ask. They requested I email them. I have. No reply a week later. Surely if council are giving them money and they don’t pay me, it’s fraud ?

Hi Juliet,

Sorry to hear your tenancy has encountered some difficulties. How benefits interact with the private rented sector is a big mess. It would probably be better if many people who currently use benefits to rent could be offered social housing, but there’s a chronic shortage of social housing as you probably know!

It wouldn’t be fraud, but your tenant does have an obligation to pay you rent as set out in your tenancy agreement.

Councils do sometimes pay landlord directly. We have lots of support material on this this might be helpful:

The second piece was written in collaboration with housing charity Shelter.

I hope this helps!

Let me know if you have further questions or if this solves it for you.


She is now threatening not to pay July 29th and use the deposit as her last month’s rent. Is there anything I can. Do to prevent this from happening. What if I need the deposit for damages?


Ah I see now - this is why you don’t want to give her a reference? Yes this seems fair enough!

You can take the whole deposit to cover any shortfalls in rental payments, but this means that you won’t be able to cover any damages (which there may or may not be) at the end of the tenancy.

One option here is to use the deposit for any damages and then chase any outstanding rent at the end of the tenancy by appealing to court for a money order.

This can be a long and expensive process, though, so it may not be worth it depending on how much rent is owed at the end of the tenancy (if any).

I’ve applied to get deposit back. Scary thing, don’t think she’ll leave come Aug 29th. Gulp. Council investigating her circumstances.

Yes council will pay direct to Landlord if tenant asks. Most Landlords don’t like people on HB which sometimes is understandable , however that also proves very difficult for those good tenants who work but need help with HB as well. My daughter is struggling with this issue. She was with her last Landlord for nearly 10 yrs then she got married but it didn’t work out as she hope & she is now looking for a place for her & her daughter. She has two jobs has always worked hard but is now down to 16 hrs a week hence the need for HB. She just needs a Landlord to give her a chance. She has 3mths rent plus deposit a wonderful reference from her previous Landlord & we her parents will act as guarantors. She also has guaranteed HB all sorted. Shes ready to move. So would love to meet the Landlord to prove she is a decent person & would be happy for Landlord to inspect the premises at anytime. So we wait. But certainly understand your situation Juliet because there is some who just spoil it for others . Good Luck anyway

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