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Housing advice and homelessness

If you are homeless or threatened with homelessness and you need assistance from us, you should contact the Housing Options team as early as possible, this needs to be within 56 days. You can contact us by phone or by using our online self-referral form:

Online self-referral form

  • Telephone: 0300 123 2442 (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 9am - 5pm and Wednesday 1pm - 5pm)  

If you are homeless out of normal office hours and you need accommodation, you can ring the Out of Hours number on 0300 123 7035. This number is not for general housing advice but for people who need emergency accommodation.

If you are a public authority working with someone who may be homeless or threatened with homelessness you may have a duty to refer to the housing authority. The public authorities which are subject to the duty to refer are specified in the Homelessness (Review Procedure etc.) Regulations 2018.

Agency Referral Form

If you are not threatened with homelessness within 56 days but would like some early help and support please contact our commissioned support provider Forfutures or call in to one of the Forfutures Advice Hubs. More information can be found on the Forfutures website.

The rights of people who are homeless or threatened with homelessness

Rights to stay in your home

If you are homeless or threatened with homelessness you may have legal rights to stay in (or return to) your home. This may be the case if your landlord tries to evict you without following the correct procedure or after a relationship breakdown.

Even if you have already left, you may be able to return if you still have the right to live there. Leaving your accommodation when you don’t have to could affect any right you may have to get help from us. For advice on your legal rights to stay in your home you can contact us on 0300 123 2442 or contact Shelter.

Rights to assistance from the council

You have a right to make an application to us if you are homeless or threatened with homelessness within 56 days. You will also have the right to:

  • an assessment of your housing and support needs and a personalised housing plan which we will develop with you
  • assistance for 56 days to help you stay in your current accommodation or help to find you a new place to live before you become homeless
  • assistance from us to help you secure accommodation for 56 days if you are already homeless or become homeless
  • an offer of interim accommodation if you are homeless and we have reason to believe you are eligible for assistance (not subject to immigration control) and have a priority need
  • if you are eligible, homeless, in priority need and not homeless intentionally you will have a right to the main housing duty and we must ensure that suitable accommodation is available to you and your household until the duty ends, usually through a suitable offer of a settled home. This may be the responsibility of another council if you do not have a local connection with the council you applied to.
  • written notifications on any decision on your application and the reasons behind those decisions
  • request a review on most decisions and, if you are still dissatisfied, you have the right to appeal to the county court on a point of law
  • when you request a review of the suitability of an offer of accommodation, you have a right to be accommodated pending the review.

Practical advice to prevent homelessness

Our accommodation finder self-help pack can be used by anyone trying to find accommodation in the Cheshire West and Chester area and includes information on:

  • how to obtain accommodation in the private rented sector
  • how to apply for social housing
  • how to access shared-ownership or other low-cost home ownership schemes

Accommodation finder self-help pack (PDF, 370KB)   

Other advice is available across our website:

Further support

Citizens Advice

The Citizens Advice  website provides independent advice on a range of subjects such as: 

You can also contact Citizens Advice by phone on 0808 2787 806.

Gov.UK

Information about tenant’s rights, harassment and illegal eviction, rights to benefits and how to protect and receive rent deposits can be found on the Gov.UK website.

Live Well

The Live Well website provides further information about local services and support for residents in Cheshire West.

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