In order to bridge the demand and supply gap for council housing, the Ministry of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities recently announced via a press release New homes to be built as part of government drive to develop brownfield land and regenerate communities

that new homes are to be built in derelict areas to increase the number of council homes available in the UK.

The announcement comes as a government grant of £11 million has been allocated as part of the  Brownfield Land Release Fund to support 23 redevelopment schemes across 11 councils. This is in addition to the £58 million allocation fund announced only a month ago (Oct-Nov 2021) to support development in 53 councils across the country. 

Can I Get A Council House On Medical Grounds?

Yes, you can get a council house on medical grounds. In fact, depending on the severity of the medical issues being faced by an applicant or their family member, the council housing application may be given priority over others.

If you or a family member are faced with a medical condition that is being worsened due to the house you currently live in or the medical condition is a disability and your current house does cannot provide for disability needs (despite possible modifications) you should apply for council housing. Depending on the severity of the condition, you will be allotted a band to indicate your position on the priority list for council housing.

In case of a non-serious medium-range medical condition, you will be awarded a Band 3 while serious conditions elevate the applicant to Band 1. In case of community work done by the applicant or their family members, a Band 2 might be assigned by the council; however, there is no confirmation on the allotment unless an application is filed along with supportive evidence.

Serious medical conditions that qualify for a Band 1 allotment for council housing include the following:

  • the applicant’s condition is expected to be terminal within twelve months and they need re-housing for appropriate care
  • the applicant’s current place of residence is contributing to their life-threatening condition and it cannot be resolved within a short period of time (or at all)
  • the applicant is living in an overcrowded property due to which there risk of life-threatening infection
  • They are housebound due to a lack of wheelchair access in the house
  • They can not be released from hospital in their current home due to lack of required amenities

It is essential to submit a Medical assessment form along with other supportive documents (as per the guidance of your local council) when you apply for council housing on medical grounds.

For details on the topic, let’s try to explore the following areas:

  • Can I Get Council House If I Have Disabled Child?
  • Can I Get Council House If I’m Pregnant?
  • Who Is Eligible For Council Housing?
  • Who Gets Priority For Council Housing?
  • How Should I File An Application For Council Housing?
  • What Happens Once The Application is Accepted? 
  • Can Applicants Choose Their Own Homes?

Can I Get Council House If I Have Disabled Child?

Yes, not only will you qualify for council housing if you have a disabled child but you will be put on priority so that you may receive council housing at the earliest possible. 

However, not everyone who has a child facing disabilities will be looking for a council house. Depending on the needs of their child, they may make modifications to their existing home and claim state benefits such as Disability Living Allowance.

It is in cases where the parents’ previous home becomes unsuitable for a child with disabilities or they can no longer afford it due to reduced income (in case one of the parents had to leave their job to tend to their child), would they be in need for council housing.

In addition to council housing, you will also be eligible for the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) to tend to your child’s care and mobility needs.  DLA is a monthly allowance paid directly into your account to tend to the needs of your disabled child. Depending on the extent of care and their individual requirements, claimants may receive anything between £23 to £89 for the Care Component and between £23 to £65 for the mobility Component.

Additionally, your local council can help you with short breaks, holiday play schemes, care at home as well as financial help. They can also help you Apply for direct payments if you claim benefits. 

Can I Get Council House If I’m Pregnant?

Yes, you can get a council house if you are pregnant. In fact, you will be considered to be in “priority need” which means that you can expect to receive an offer for transfer to council housing much sooner than a lot of other people. During this transition, the council will arrange temporary residence for you until suitable and permanent living arrangements are made.

In addition to council housing, you will also be eligible for the following state benefits:

  • Universal Credit: This is applicable if the applicant is pregnant and also without an income
  • Housing Benefit: This will help you with rent and housing costs
  • Discretionary Housing Payment: This is a non-refundable one-time payment to help with rent/deposit/advance
  • Sure Start Maternity Grant: This is a £500 grant to help expecting mothers with the expenses of their first child
  • Free NHS dental care and prescriptions  
  • Child Benefit: These are regular payments made after the child is born up until they are 16 years of age (in some cases it may be up to 20 years if the child is in full-time education)

Who Is Eligible For Council Housing?

Generally, each council has their own rules for the provision of council homes. This is called an “allocation scheme”; according to which applicants’ eligibility criteria and priorities are assigned.

However, as a basic rule, anyone who is above 18 years of age, low on income and savings can apply for council housing. Some councils also require a “local connection” of the applicant. This means that either they have lived in the vicinity for a number of years or they have a family or job in the area.

Key criteria for council housing eligibility include the following:

  • the applicants hold British or Irish citizenship
  • they have indefinite leave to remain
  • they fall under settled status (under the EU settlement scheme)
  • they are refugees or under humanitarian protection
  • they are a Commonwealth citizen with a right of abode

Who Gets Priority For Council Housing?

While each council has an individual allocation scheme to follow in terms of assigning priority to council housing applicants, claimants who fulfil any of the following criteria are expected to be higher on priority:

  • if someone is legally homeless 
  • they have to move homes due to a serious medical condition or disability
  • due to hardship-anything from medical treatment or potential danger to changing jobs
  • currently residing in an over-crowded house or under poor living conditions

However, as per a recent news report, foster parents and key workers will get higher priority for council housing in some areas. Foster parents and adoptive parents are being assigned Band 1 to extend the maximum benefit to their children. In recognition of their work during the pandemic, key workers have been assigned a Band 2 (The total number of bands is 4 with Band 1 being the highest on the priority list).

How Should I File An Application For Council Housing?

To apply for council housing, candidates are required to apply to their local council (mostly online), who will then consider it based on their criteria for awarding priority to those from certain demographics and or social classes. To find out details about your local council click on this link Find your local council

Candidates are advised to share as many relevant details as possible in their application and also include any supporting evidence to back up their claims. This may include medical reports or doctor’s notes, in case the application is being raised on medical grounds. 

Details of the following may be required:

  • income and/or benefits
  • employment history
  • long-term medical conditions or disabilities
  • savings 
  • assets in possession such as automobile
  • visas or immigration documents (if the applicant is not from the UK)

What Happens Once The Application is Accepted? 

Once an application is accepted, the local council assigns candidates to a group (also referred to as or ‘band’) and assigns a level of priority.

A high priority indicates that the candidate can expect to be assigned a home urgently. However, there are chances that despite being assigned a high priority label, some individuals may have to wait a long time. 

Can Applicants Choose Their Own Homes?

Applicants will need to check with their local councils whether a place of residence will be chosen and assigned by the council or the residents be given the option to choose. In the case of the latter, once the application is approved, the local council may share an online platform where the process of “bidding” takes place.

If a candidate finds a suitable home and prefers it as their residence, they may inform the council of their intent by applying for it online. This is called “bidding”. The council may then direct them on how to proceed with the next steps in the bidding process.

Conclusion:

An application for council housing on medical grounds is generally considered to be on priority; depending on the severity of the condition and the lack of appropriate conditions in the applicant’s existing residence. If the medical condition is due to a disability, applicants also become eligible for state benefits that the local council office can advise them on. However, the applicant(s) will be required to submit their medical records along with their application for council housing.

FAQs: Can I Get A Council House On Medical Grounds?

What is medical priority for housing?

Medical priority for council housing is awarded n cases where the applicant (or a family member) is either suffering due to the conditions of their current home or they are making their health worse or they fail to meet their medical needs. A change in residence is expected to improve the ailing person’s health or provide them with better medical amenities.

Can a doctor’s note help with housing?

You will not need a doctor’s note for council housing as long as you have provided the necessary details in the medical assessment form. However, should the note provide additional information that is not covered in the form or you are re-applying after being refused council accommodation, it may help in providing you with a council house earlier or providing one at all. 

Can your GP help with housing?

Yes, your GP can help with housing by writing a letter to state your medical needs in support of your application. However, even if they don’t write a letter, the council will contact them for an assessment of your medical needs if your council housing application is based on medical grounds.

What makes you priority for housing?

If a council housing applicant fulfils any of the following criteria, they are expected to be higher on priority:

  • if someone is legally homeless 
  • they have to move homes due to a serious medical condition or disability
  • due to hardship-anything from medical treatment or potential danger to changing jobs
  • currently residing in an over-crowded house or under poor living conditions

However, as per a recent news report, foster parents and key workers will get higher priority for council housing in some areas.

What are medical grounds?

Medical grounds include any mental or physical health-related matters that serve as the reason for a judgement or decision. For instance, applying for a council house on medical grounds. 

References:

The housing register: Medical assessment | LBHF

People who need to move on medical or welfare grounds

A Guide to Benefits for disabled children – Working Families

How much Disability Living Allowance will my child I get?

Pregnant and Homeless: A Guide to Pregnancy Support | Centrepoint

Pregnant or Homeless With Kids Support | Centrepoint

Financial Support for Single Parents | Benefits | Information | singleparents.org.uk

Who has priority

New homes to be built as part of government drive to develop brownfield land and regenerate communities

Getting a council home

Council housing

John has 22 years of experience in financial services. This spans across financial research, financial services (As a qualified mortgage broker and underwriter), financial trading and sales at global investment banks. While working as a publishing research analyst, he covered European bank credit and advised institutional clients on investment strategies at both JP Morgan and Societe Generale. John has passed all three levels of the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) programme.

John has 22 years of experience in financial services. This spans across financial research, financial services (As a qualified mortgage broker and underwriter), financial trading and sales at global investment banks. While working as a publishing research analyst, he covered European bank credit and advised institutional clients on investment strategies at both JP Morgan and Societe Generale. John has passed all three levels of the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) programme.