A pot of almost £300,000 will be available for people living in the City of Lincoln Council and North Kesteven District Council area who are struggling to pay their rent, find a deposit for a property or will be impacted by the changes to the benefits system.
The City of Lincoln has been given £199,741 from the government to spend, with North Kesteven allocated a further £98,229 from April, as part of the Discretionary Housing Payment scheme, which aims to help people struggling with rent payments.
Amid changes such as the “bedroom tax” coming in next month, people are being urged to consider applying for the funding.
Laura Brown, Benefits Team Leader at the council, said: “There are a lot of changes coming and this pot of money is here to help people if they find themselves with a shortfall in their housing benefit and can not afford to pay a top up in their rent.
“The money can be used for a number of reasons such as helping people with deposits or rent advances, women who are pregnant to help them cover the rent until the baby arrives and people living with a disability who need the extra bedroom.
“It is designed to support those who really need help over a short time period.”
So far, for 2012/13, more than 400 people across both districts were given financial help, totalling £113,539 – however more funding is available from the government this year because of the changes to the benefits system.
Anyone eligible for Housing Benefit who is responsible for paying rent and requires further financial assistance with housing costs can apply for help under the scheme.
People can already start applying for a share of the 2013/4 fund by going to www.lincoln.gov.uk/dhp, calling the Benefits Team on 01522 873593 or 01529 414155, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.