If you apply for help with homelessness, we assess your needs to see if you are eligible for help.
When you apply for help due to homelessness, we assess whether you are:
- eligible for assistance
- homeless or threatened with homelessness within 56 days
- in priority need
- not intentionally homeless.
Each of these terms has a particular legal meaning.
We also consider if you have a local connection to the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole area.
Please note - the legal duties are complicated, so the information below is for guidance only.
Eligible for assistance
You'll usually be eligible for help if you:
- live in the UK, are a British citizen and have not recently spent time living in other countries
- have refugee status or indefinite leave to remain in the UK
- are a citizen of the European Union who is a worker in the UK.
Some other people from abroad are also eligible for assistance, depending on their circumstances.
We look at the eligibility of all members of the household.
Homeless or threatened with homelessness
To decide if you're homeless, we have to look at any accommodation that you have access to, and whether or not you are at risk of homelessness in the next 56 days.
We may consider you homeless or threatened with homelessness if:
- you have no home in the UK, or anywhere else in the world, where you can live together with your immediate family
- the property you live in is no longer suitable or safe for you
- you have received a notice from your landlord or from the courts.
There may be other reasons that you would be considered homeless or threatened with homelessness.
If we are satisfied that you are eligible for assistance and threatened with homelessness within 56 days, we will have a duty to help you to try and prevent your homelessness. We will complete an assessment of your needs and provide you with a Personalised Housing Plan with steps you must take to help prevent your homelessness.
If we are satisfied that you are eligible for assistance, we will have a duty to help you to try and relieve your homelessness. We will complete an assessment of your needs and provide you with a Personalised Housing Plan with steps you must take to help relieve your homelessness.
Please note: the following only applies if we have accepted a relief duty to you.
We will look into your circumstances to decide if you are in 'priority need' according to the homelessness legislation.
If you don't meet the criteria for priority need, we may still have a duty to help prevent/relieve your homelessness. However, we may not have a duty to provide any temporary accommodation.
In addition to the above, we may also be required to assess whether you have become homeless due to your actions or omissions.
If we find that you don't have a local connection with Bournemouth, we may refer you to another council for help. We won't refer you to an area where you wouldn't be safe.
If you require a Housing Needs Asessment
You can contact the Housing Options team on 01202 123147 or drop into the Customer Contact Centre:
Bournemouth Town Hall, St Stephens Road
Please bring any relevant documents with you as well as ID and 3 months bank statements for all accounts held.
Drop in service opening times
- Monday to Thursday: 9am to 3pm
- Friday: 9am to 2:30pm
Emergencies only after 3pm.
Page last updated: 19 April 2021