This content applies to Scotland only.
Housing laws vary between Scotland and England. Get advice relating to England
Where will I live?
If you have a baby or young child and are leaving the family home for the first time, you'll need to be very organised and to think carefully about whether your new accommodation is suitable for your child, as well as for you. Check out your housing options here.
There are lots of benefits, tax credits and other sources of money available for young parents, but knowing what to claim can be difficult. If you're under 18 and still living at home, you may be better off if your parents or guardians claim benefits on your behalf. Talk to an adviser at a Citizens Advice Bureau or other local agency - they can help you work out what to claim, fill out the forms and deal with the benefits agencies if you have any problems.
Can the council help me?
If you're homeless, your local council has to help you out. You don't have to be sleeping rough to be homeless - you can be staying temporarily with friends or family, or living in a hostel or refuge. The council should also count you as homeless if you're living with your parents but they want you to leave, if your current home is seriously overcrowded, or if you want to be with your partner but there's nowhere you can both live together. Find out more about making a homeless application to the council here.
What if the council won't help?
If the council refuses to help you, don't be put off. Call Shelter's free housing advice helpline on 0808 800 4444 or visit a local advice centre to find out exactly what you're entitled to.
Need somewhere to stay tonight?
If you've nowhere to stay, don't panic. Check out your emergency accommodation options here and call Shelter's free housing advice helpline on 0808 800 4444. Shelter doesn't provide accommodation, but an adviser may be able to sort you out a place in a hostel or refuge.