Housing advice

Below you will find a selection of self help materials around the subject of housing advice. If you can't find what you're after, a number of ACFA members can offer assistance. Use the search function on the right of this page to find someone to help.

Advice and information offered includes:

  • Housing Benefits
  • Homelessness and rehousing
  • Landlord and tenant issues
  • Disrepair 
  • Social Housing
  • Rent and mortgage arrears
  • Defending possession actions
  • Tenancy disputes
  • Harrassment & illegal evictions
  • Tenants' rights and responsibilities

Housing benefit

Housing Benefit is a national welfare benefit scheme that can help you pay your rent if you are on a low income. You may be eligible for housing benefit if you are on a low income or claiming benefits; your savings must be below £16,000, unless you are getting the guarantee credit of pension credit.

Housing benefit helps pay for rent and some types of service charges. It doesn't help with water charges, care or support costs, most heating charges and it  doesn't cover mortgage payments.

Housing benefit is for people who rent their homes or who part-rent through shared ownership. Only you or your partner can claim. You usually won't be able to claim if you rent your home from a family member.

You can apply to your local council for housing benefit; you will have to complete a form and provide evidence. 

Bristol City Council
South Gloucestershire Council
North Somerset Council
Bath & North East Somerset


This fact sheet, produced by National Debtline, tells you what kind of help you might get if you are homeless; it explains your rights, and how to deal with some of the common homelessness problems. Download it here.

Rough sleeping

Anyone can become homeless, and find themselves sleeping rough. The longer they're in this situation the more likely it is they'll become trapped and vulnerable to becoming a victim of crime, developing drug or alcohol problems, or experiencing health problems.

Many rough sleepers aren't aware that advice and support is available and, unfortunately, it can be hard for these services to find them due to their chaotic and nomadic lifestyle.

Therefore, if you’re concerned about someone sleeping rough, get in touch with StreetLink so they can alert the appropriate local authority to ensure local support is made available.

Mortgage arrears

This fact sheet, produced by Citizens Advice, covers what you need to consider if you find yourself falling behind with your mortgage payments. Download it here.

Private tenant's rights

This fact sheet, produced by Shelter, outlines your rights and responsibilities when renting a room, a flat or a house from a private landlord. Download it here.

Housing factsheets

A wide range of fact sheets covering a variety of housing issues have been produced by Shelter and Citizens Advice - they are available to download:

Shelter - Housing Advice Factsheets

Citizens Advice - Housing Factsheets

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