How to get help if you are homeless

The Housing Options Service provides housing information and advice on a range of housing issues that could include:

  • homelessness
  • rent arrears
  • domestic violence
  • landlord/tenant disputes
  • loss of employment
  • anti-social behaviour/harassment welfare benefits.

Homelessness means not having a home. Even if you have a roof over your head you can still be homeless. This might be because you do not have the right to stay where you live or because the house you live in is not suitable for you.

The Housing Options Service will work with anyone who is either homeless or threatened with homelessness to try and enable them to stay in their homes or to help them find alternative accommodation. This may include:

  • mediation in landlord and tenant disputes
  • advice and information
  • assistance with housing benefit queries and forms
  • referrals to other agencies for support, mediation and temporary accommodation.

If we can't prevent you becoming homeless, we can refer you to our Homelessness Case Worker, who will assess your needs.

Homeless application

An appointment will be made for you to see the Homelessness Case Worker. This will be a same day appointment if you have nowhere to go that day. A homeless application form will be completed and all of your options will be discussed.

We will assess your housing needs and establish the following:

Are you eligible for assistance?

Some groups of people who have lived abroad are not entitled to help if they are homeless. We will check if you are subject to immigration control.

Are you homeless or threatened with homelessness?

We must check whether you are legally classed as homeless before we can decide what help you are entitled to. In deciding whether you are homeless, the Council has to look at any accommodation you may have access to.

Are you in priority need?

You will be in priority need if one of the people included in your application falls into one of the priority need groups:

  • Pregnant women.
  • People responsible for dependent children.
  • Most people aged 16 or 17 who are care leavers.
  • People who are particularly vulnerable.
  • People who are made homeless by fire or flood.

If you are homeless and in priority need the Council may have a duty to provide you with temporary accommodation.

Are you intentionally homeless?

We have to make enquiries into the reasons you became homeless and must establish whether:

  • you deliberately did (or didn't do) something that caused you to leave accommodation which you could otherwise have stayed in
  • it would have been reasonable for you to stay there.

This may include:

  • not paying your rent or mortgage when you could have afforded to
  • you were evicted for antisocial behaviour
  • you left accommodation you could have stayed in.

Once a full assessment has been carried out you will be notified in writing of the outcome and informed of what duty is owed to you.

The decision letter will say:

  • what decision the Council has made
  • what duties are owed to you
  • the reasons why the decision was made
  • that you have a right to request a review of a decision and how you can do so.

For further information or if you need help because you might become homeless, contact The Housing Options Service speak to a Housing Options Advisor.

Help for people who are sleeping rough

Bradford Council has commissioned a service to help people who are sleeping rough or at risk of sleeping rough in the district. DISC run this service – called Bradford No Second Night Out.

No Second Night Out is open 365 days a year and offers a range of services to rough sleepers including outreach work, assessments and advice as well as co-ordinating the delivery of the Cold Weather provision for rough sleepers. They can also provide short term emergency accommodation when people have nowhere else to stay.

If you are concerned about someone sleeping rough in Bradford, you can contact No Second Night Out in the following ways:

  • By phone on: 01274 309165
  • By email at: Bradford@disc-vol.org.uk
  • In person at Discovery House - 133 Barkerend Road, Bradford, BD3 9AU.

If you are at risk of sleeping rough, you can refer yourself.

You can also contact Street Link with details of someone sleeping rough. Streetlink is a national organisation that helps members of the public to connect people sleeping rough with services that can help. Contact Streetlink by phone on 0300 500 0914 or via https://www.streetlink.org.uk/

Streetlink will forward the details to Bradford No Second Night Out who will then make contact with the rough sleeper.

No Second Night Out will respond to referrals within 24 hours and aims to identify and work with the individual to assess their housing and other needs as quickly as possible.

Cold Weather provision

The Cold Weather provision is a multi-agency partnership that provides emergency bed spaces in Bradford to rough sleepers on freezing winter nights, commissioned by Bradford Council.

The service operates between 1 October and 30 April and opens when the predicted temperature for the upcoming evening is due to fall to zero or below. The Cold Weather partners provide emergency beds for clients in communal rooms, so no-one has to sleep on the streets on the coldest winter nights.

Referrals to the service can be made in person at Discovery House, 133 Barkerend Road, BD3 9AU, over the phone on 01274 309165, through Bradford Council’s Housing Options Service and other advisory housing and support services in the district.

Referrals can be taken from 9am to 10pm and a brief assessment will be undertaken to try and find a suitable bed space for the client for the night. The Cold Weather partners will also try and help clients find somewhere to live over the long term.

How can I help homeless people?

There are lots of different ways you can help from volunteering to donating to charities who work with local homeless people. Visit Street Support Bradford for more details.

The Homelessness Reduction Act

The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 will come into effect on 3 April 2018. This legislation will change the Council’s responsibilities to those who are threatened with homelessness or are homeless. The frequently asked questions sheet (PDF) provides more information on these changes.

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Contact details

Housing Options Service
Britannia House
Hall Ings
Bradford

(use the entrance on the corner of Bridge Street and Broadway)
BD1 1HX

Or
Keighley Town Hall
Bow Street
Keighley
BD21 3PB

Telephone : 01274 435999
If you are homeless and have nowhere to sleep, outside of office hours please phone : 01274 381999
Email : housingoptions@bradford.gov.uk

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