My Account

We need to know details of your income and that of your partner to calculate your Housing Benefit (HB) and Council Tax Reduction (CTR).

What counts as income?

All of the following are types of income that are considered when calculating how much HB and CTR you will receive.

  • earnings
  • self-employed earnings
  • pensions
  • certain state benefits
  • rent received from tenants or boarders
  • tax credits

You must declare these when you claim and every time they change. See the proof checklist for a breakdown of what evidence you need to provide.

Ignored income

Where a claimant is getting any of the following, we will ignore their income and they will qualify for the maximum HB and CTR:

  • Income Based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • Income Support
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • guarantee element of Pension Credit

Disregarded income

Some incomes are fully or partly disregarded when working out a person's income. These include:

  • Attendance Allowance
  • Business expenses paid with salary
  • Charitable voluntary payments
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Fostering payments
  • Child maintenance payments
  • Child Benefit

Child Care costs disregarded

If you pay for child care then part of this cost can be deducted from your income figure used to calculate your HB and CTR. This can be up to £175 (for one child) or £300 (for two or more children) per week for the following categories:

  • Lone parents who work at least 16 hours per week.
  • Couples who both work at least 16 hours per week.
  • Couples if one of them works at least 16 hours per week and the other one is incapacitated, or in hospital, or in prison (whether serving a sentence or on remand)

To qualify the child or children will need to be with:

  • A registered child minder, nursery or play scheme.
  • A child minding scheme for which registration is not required (e.g. run by a school, local authority).
  • Child care approved for working tax credit purposes.
  • Any out-of-school-hours scheme provided by a school on school premises or by local authority – in this case only the child must be aged 8 or more.

You will not qualify if the child is 15 years old or more. If the child is disabled the age would be 16 years.

Paid employment and self-employment

We work out your earned income by deducting the following from your gross salary:

  • The tax charged
  • The National Insurance charged
  • 50% of any pension payments

The following amounts are also disregarded from your weekly earned income if you are:

  • Single person - £5 per week
  • Couple - £10 per week
  • Lone Parent - £25 per week
  • Disabled - £20 per week

There is a further £17.10 disregarded from your income if you work more than 16 hours and have children or if you work more than 30 hours per week and do not have children.

If you are self-employed your income for benefit purposes will be worked out on your profit after tax. Some expenses taken by HM Revenues and Customs (the Tax Office) are not counted for benefit purposes. The above income disregards still apply.

To see if you may be entitled to claim use a benefits calculator.

Contact us

Online: Make an enquiry
Telephone: 020 8891 1411


Revenues and Benefits,
Civic Centre,
44 York Street,



Updated: 15 September 2021

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