Top 10 questions

Need expert advice? Read the top 10 questions we get asked here at Shelter, and the answers our advisers have given.

Housing laws differ between Scotland and England
This content applies to Scotland only
Get advice if you're in England

  • 1. How do I find my own place?

    The kind of place that's right for you will depend on what you can afford and whether you are ready for total independence.

  • 2. Can I claim housing benefit to help pay my rent?

    You may be able to claim housing benefit if you have a low income or are claiming other benefits. Special rules apply if you are under 25, a full-time student or a care leaver.

  • 3. I'm being evicted - what should I do?

    If you're about to be evicted, it may be worth trying to negotiate with your landlord. You may be able to come to an agreement. If this isn't possible, your rights depend on your circumstances.

  • 4. Can I get help with housing from the council?

    Anyone 16 or over can apply for a council house in Scotland. But waiting lists can be long and it may take a while. You can make a homeless application to the council to check

  • 5. How do I get out of my tenancy?

    If you want to move out of your rented home, you must go through the correct process. Let your landlord know in advance that you'd like to end your tenancy.

  • 6.What do I do about rent arrears?

    If you're behind with your rent, your landlord may have the right to evict you, and can ask for a court order to make you pay back what you owe. Ask for advice and check

  • 7. Who is responsible for repairs?

    If your rented home needs repairs done, tell your landlord as soon as possible and don't use equipment that might be unsafe. Keep a copy of what you send your landlord.

  • 8. My landlord's hassling me

    Some landlords try and force their tenants to move out. If your landlord makes life difficult for you, they may be guilty of harassment. There are steps you can take if their behaviour worries you.

  • 9. Problems with letting agents

    Many privately rented places are managed by agents. The agency usually deals with day-to-day queries, such as maintenance. They act on for landlords - so you need to understand your rights.

  • 10. Flatmates from hell?

    Most problems in shared housing are to do with a clash of lifestyles or day-to-day issues. Try to choose who you live with carefully and agree some ground rules before you move in.

Speak to a Shelter Scotland adviser

Call Shelter Scotland's free housing advice helpline

0808 800 4444
9am-5pm, Monday to Friday

Email an adviser

You can also email a housing adviser. We aim to respond within three working days.

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