Increasing your income

Although we realise this is not always possible, you could cover any reduction in your benefits by increasing your income. Here are some options that you could consider:

Find a job

One of the Government's stated aims of the benefits changes is to encourage people to find employment. If this is a possibility for you then getting a job - or increasing your hours if you are already in work - could make up for any reduction in your benefits.

There are several organisations that can help you find a job. Jobcentre Plus, which is part of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), provides services to help people of working age who receive benefits find employment. Visit the Jobcentre Plus website to find your local office or get advice. Talk to your Jobcentre Plus advisor to make sure you are getting the right support.

It is also worth following your local Jobcentre Plus on Twitter as they often tweet details of new jobs, courses and other useful advice.

The Government’s National Careers Service provides information and advice on training and employment opportunities, as well as tools to help you create a CV or use recruitment websites. You could also try Universal Jobmatch to search for jobs in your area.

Any additional income will affect the amount of benefits you are entitled to, so it is important that you notify the DWP if you get a job. However, going back to work doesn’t mean giving up all your benefits.  Some benefits may carry on, and others may be available once you’re working.

Ask everyone to contribute

You could ask other members of your household to pay towards the cost of your rent and living expenses.

If you have any other adults aged 18 or over living with you, apart from your partner, it is expected that they will pay towards the household costs. Your benefits are being reduced to account for this so they could help make up the shortfall.

Take in a lodger

If you are affected by the bedroom tax, you could consider taking in a lodger to fill your spare room.

Find out more about taking in a lodger.

Apply for Discretionary Housing Payments

If you are unable to make up the shortfall in your rent from your own resources, and there are special circumstances why should remain in your current home, then you may be able to claim a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP).

Find out more about Discretionary Housing Payments