Will the council rehouse me if I get evicted with children?

Facing eviction when you have children is a distressing situation, but there are rehousing options available through local councils in the UK. This comprehensive guide aims to provide detailed information, steps, and resources to help you understand your rights, navigate the process of seeking rehousing assistance from the council, and ensure the well-being of your family during this challenging time.

Understanding Eviction and Rehousing Rights

1. Reasons for Eviction

Eviction can occur for various reasons, including:

  • Rent Arrears: Not paying rent on time or in full.
  • End of Tenancy: Landlord decides not to renew the tenancy.
  • Breach of Tenancy Agreement: Violating terms of the tenancy agreement.
  • Property Sale: Landlord sells the property and the new owner wants vacant possession.
  • Notice Period: Landlord gives notice (e.g., Section 21 notice) to end the tenancy.

2. Rehousing Rights and Responsibilities

As a tenant facing eviction with children, you have rights and responsibilities:

  • Notice Period: Your landlord must give you proper notice before eviction.
  • Council Rehousing: Local councils have a duty to provide rehousing assistance to eligible families facing homelessness.
  • Children’s Rights: Children have specific rights under the Children Act 1989, ensuring their welfare and accommodation needs are considered.

Steps to Take If Facing Eviction with Children

1. Seek Advice Early

  • Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB): Contact CAB for free advice on eviction rights, housing options, and financial assistance.
  • Shelter: Shelter provides guidance on housing issues and legal rights, including eviction protections.

2. Negotiate with Your Landlord

  • Communicate: Discuss with your landlord or letting agent to explore options like extending the notice period or negotiating a repayment plan for rent arrears.
  • Legal Advice: Seek legal advice if negotiations with your landlord are challenging or if you believe the eviction is unjustified.

3. Check Eligibility for Council Rehousing

  • Apply to the Council: Contact your local council’s housing department to apply for rehousing assistance.
  • Homelessness Assessment: The council will conduct a homelessness assessment to determine your eligibility for housing assistance.

4. Provide Necessary Documentation

  • Documentation: Prepare documents such as proof of identity, tenancy agreement, eviction notice, income details, and evidence of children’s needs.
  • Supporting Information: Provide supporting information like medical reports or social worker assessments if applicable.

5. Understand Housing Options

  • Temporary Accommodation: The council may offer temporary housing while assessing your application for long-term housing.
  • Permanent Housing: Depending on your circumstances, you may be eligible for social housing (council or housing association properties) or help to secure a private rental property.

6. Appeal Decisions if Necessary

  • Review Decision: If you disagree with the council’s decision regarding your rehousing application, you have the right to request a review or appeal.
  • Legal Support: Seek legal advice to understand your rights and options for challenging a decision.

Support and Resources Available

Legal Support

  • Legal Aid: If you’re on a low income, you may qualify for legal aid to help cover legal costs for eviction defense or challenging rehousing decisions.

Financial Assistance

  • Universal Credit: Provides financial support, including housing costs, if you’re eligible. Apply through the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
  • Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP): Extra help from the council to meet housing costs not covered by other benefits.

Additional Support Services

  • Children’s Services: Contact children’s services at your local council for support with childcare, education, and safeguarding during the rehousing process.
  • Family Support: Charities and organizations like Barnardo’s offer family support services, including counseling and practical assistance.

Understanding Council Housing Policies

1. Allocation Policies

  • Priority Need: Families with children, pregnant women, and vulnerable individuals are often given priority for rehousing.
  • Local Connection: Demonstrating a local connection (e.g., living or working in the area) may influence housing priority.

2. Homelessness Reduction Act 2017

  • Duty to Prevent Homelessness: Councils must take proactive steps to prevent homelessness and provide support to those at risk.

3. Social Housing Waiting Lists

  • Register: Join the council’s housing waiting list if you’re eligible for social housing.
  • Banding System: Councils use a banding or points-based system to prioritize housing applicants based on need.


Facing eviction with children in the UK is a challenging situation, but there are rights and support available to help you navigate through it. By understanding your rights as a tenant, seeking early advice, and engaging with your local council for rehousing assistance, you can improve your chances of securing suitable accommodation for your family. Remember to gather necessary documentation, explore financial support options, and seek legal advice if needed to ensure the best possible outcome during this difficult time.

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