What are capital and savings?
For housing and council tax benefit purposes, capital means any savings and investments held by you or your partner (if you have one).
This means everything held in all types of account, bank accounts, supermarket saving accounts, internet bank accounts, building society accounts, post office accounts, ISAs, TESSAs or PEPS, National Saving Certificates, Premium Bonds, stocks and shares, redundancy pay and tax refunds. It also includes the value of any land or property you or your partner own.
Why do you need to know about my capital and savings?
Your capital and savings can affect any housing benefit and council tax benefit you may get. A person who has more than £16,000 of capital will not usually qualify for housing benefit or council tax benefit, unless you get pension credit guarantee where there is no capital limit.
If you are aged under 60, any capital under £6,000 is ignored. If you are aged over 60, any capital under £10,000 is ignored completely when we are working out the amount of benefit you will get.
What if I have capital between £6,000, £10,000 and £16,000?
Anyone aged under 60 who has capital between £6,000 and £16,000 may be entitled to housing benefit or council tax benefit. When working out your benefit entitlement, we will add £1 per week to your income for every £250 (or part of), that you have over £6,000. This is called tariff income.
If you are aged 60 or over, when working out your benefit entitlement we will add £1 per week to your income for every £500 (or part of) that you have over £10,000.
What if I get income support, jobseekers allowance (income-based) or employment and support allowance (income-related)?
If you get income support, jobseekers allowance (income-based), pension credit (guarantee) or employment and support allowance (income-related), the Department for Work and Pensions will already have taken any capital you or your partner have into account, so we will not need to.
Is there any capital that you do not take into account?
There are items of capital that are not taken into account when we work out your entitlement to benefit. For example:
- the home you own and live in
- a self-employed person's business assets
- arrears of certain state benefits
- certain compensation payments
- a life insurance policy which has not been cashed in
Please contact us if you need any more information about this and other disregards.
What proof do I need to send to the Benefits Service?
When you apply for housing benefit and council tax benefit, you will need to send proof of all the capital and savings held by you and your partner (if you have one). Listed below is the proof you will need to provide.
(It is important that all the documents you provide are originals. We cannot accept photocopies).
Please note that these are only examples and do not cover all types of capital and savings. For further help or guidance, contact the Benefits Service.
- If you have any bank accounts (including current accounts), building society accounts, post office accounts or any other sort of savings account, you will need to provide statements covering the last two months showing all debits, credits and a balance
- If you have any savings bonds, unit trusts, stocks and shares, National Savings Certificates or Premium Bonds, you will need to provide your statement or certificate
- If you have any cash holdings (for example, cash that you do not have in a bank or building society account), you will also need to tell us about this
- If you or your partner own any land or property (other than the home you live in), you will need to provide full details of the address, the area it is located in, what it is used for and an approximate valuation. Please complete the valuation form on this page
Please note that if you receive income support, jobseekers allowance (income-based), pension credit or employment and support allowance (income-related), you will not have to send us any proof of your capital or savings, as you will already have given this information to the Department for Work and Pensions.
If you need more information on capital and savings, please contact the Benefits Service.