What to do
The Housing Advice Team provide high quality, customer-focused service to people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless to empower them to make informed choices about their housing options.
We believe that homelessness can be prevented in the majority, if not all, cases. There is a range of ways in which we can do this, and there are different housing options available to you in the City.
The most important thing is don't leave it too late!
The sooner you act, the better chances you have of keeping your home or getting the help and support that need for your situation.
If you need help, please let us know by registering for an account through our customer portal. This will enable our staff to access and deal with your application and provide you with help quickly. This portal will also allow you to upload any supporting documents to your application easily via smartphone or tablet.
If you need help registering for an account and submitting an application, step by step instructions can be found here.
You will need an email Step by step instructions for setting up an email address can be found here
If you still have problems accessing this online service, you can contact us on 01905 722589. Officers are available Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. Alternatively come to the Trinity Street Housing Advice Centre, Trinity Street, Worcester WR1 2PW which is open Monday-Friday 10am-4pm and an appointment will be made to help you.
For emergencies only outside of these hours please telephone 01562 733178.
The customer portal is an online account where you will be able to manage your application. You will have the ability to:
- View the status of your application
- View any letters that have been sent to you
- Communicate with your housing officer
- Monitor your Personal Housing Plan
- Upload documents using a computer or smartphone.
The homelessness process takes time and will go through the following steps. You can assist us by providing the following information at the various stages.
Step 1: Showing us you are eligible and homeless
When you call us, you will need to be able to prove that you are eligible for help (generally speaking, as a UK citizen or EU worker you are eligible) and are actually homeless. That may include providing a section 21 notice or a letter confirming your circumstances. If you do not have a connection to Worcester City Council, we may refer your application to another authority at some stage during the application. Find your local council here.
Step 2: Getting an assessment and creating your Personal Housing Plan
Once we have confirmed your eligibility and circumstances, you will have an appointment with a Housing Solutions Officer for a housing assessment. You will need to allow 1-2 hours for this appointment. Together, you will create your Personal Housing Plan, which is a set of actions that you and the Council will take to resolve your housing situation. The actions are tailored to meet your individual needs and circumstances.
Step 3: Working on your plan
Over the following few weeks, you will be responsible for updating your plan and taking the necessary actions. You will need to make sure you complete the ‘reasonable steps’ agreed in your plan. Your plan is reviewed regularly, and actions may be amended as your case progresses.
If you have registered for a customer portal, you can manage your plan online through your account.
We will try to prevent your homelessness wherever possible if you come to us for help early enough. However, if we are unable to do this or if you are already homeless we will continue to assist you until one of the following occurs:
- You accept suitable accommodation that is available to you for at least 6 months
- You refuse suitable accommodation
- 56 days expires
If you have not successfully found suitable accommodation after a period of 56 days, we will then decide about whether we owe you the “Main Housing Duty”. For this, you need to be able to prove you pass five tests.
- Eligibility: This means you have the legal right to access public funds and to work in the UK. More detail on the legal definition of ‘Eligibility’.
- Homeless: This means you don’t have a home, anywhere else in the world, where it would be reasonable for you to live. More detail on the legal definition of ‘Homeless’.
- Priority Need: This could mean because of vulnerability, such as a health condition, or previously being a member of the armed forces, it is harder for you to find accommodation than someone else. It could mean because you have young children, you have a priority. It could mean, because you have lost your previous home through a disaster, such as a fire or a flood, then the council needs to provide you with housing. More detail on the legal definition of ‘Priority Need’.
- Not Intentionally Homeless: If you have previously lost accommodation because of something you haven’t done (eg paying your rent), or because of something you have done (eg ASB), then the council may find you intentionally homeless. If we do, we don’t have to provide you with housing. More detail on the legal definition of ‘Intentionally Homeless’.
- Local Connection: You need to prove that you have a local connection to Worcester City, such as living here for the last six months, or for three years out of the last five. More detail on the legal definition of ‘Local Connection’.
If you are homeless or at risk of homelessness, please register online to submit a self-referral.
Phone: 01905 722589
In-person: Trinity Street Housing Advice Centre, Trinity Street Worcester, WR1 2PW.
Housing Staff are available to assist you at the advice centre from Monday- Friday 10am-4pm. They will be able to help you complete a self-referral.
*Please note the Housing & Welfare Options Team is not a drop-in service. You must submit an application using the link above and you will be contacted to make an appointment within 1 working day depending on the urgency of your situation. Appointments are Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm.
By Post: The Guildhall High Street Worcester WR1 2EY.
Out of hours: If you find that you have become homeless out of hours and have nowhere to stay you can contact the Emergency Homeless Out Of Hours Number: 01562 733178