Housing options in the private rented sector
There are many benefits to renting accommodation privately. These include:
- a wide choice of areas and large numbers of properties available
- you may be able to move in quickly
- properties may be furnished
- private rented accommodation is available in most areas of the borough and in areas where there is little or no social housing
You can find a privately rented property in many ways, including the local paper or through a letting agent.
Once you’ve found a potential property, arrange to view it and check the landlord’s requirements. You can then contact us to discuss ways in which we may be able to help you, including:
- carrying out an affordability assessment – to reassure you that you are not taking on a property that is too expensive
- benefits checks – we can check to make sure you are getting all the benefits which you could be entitled to
- negotiating a rent reduction with a landlord – when appropriate
- financial assistance, when appropriate (see below)
If you are on a low income and a tenancy is agreed, you can apply for your Local Housing Allowance (housing benefit). The housing benefit department may also be able to pay your benefit direct to the landlord.
When you are looking for a new home to rent the landlord may ask you for a sum of money (a deposit) before you move in. This payment is sometimes called a bond. Cheltenham Borough Council has a loan scheme and a bond scheme that you may be eligible for.
A bond is a guarantee from the council to the landlord on behalf of a tenant. By providing a ‘paper bond guarantee’ up to a maximum value of 1 month’s rent, we can help you to access private rented accommodation. Not everyone is eligible for the Bond Scheme. It is designed to assist those who are in housing need, on a low income or income related benefits and unable to afford a bond for a privately rented property. For more information about this scheme or to see if you qualify, please contact us.
In order for you to secure a new home, it may be possible for us to offer you a loan for the amount of a deposit. This fund is used to prevent homelessness and is not available to everyone – we have specific criteria that need to be met.
Contact us on 01242 775168, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit us at Cheltenham First Stop, 301-305 High Street, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL503HWAre you a landlord with property in Cheltenham? We want to hear from you! See our information for landlords.