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Housing advice and homelessness prevention

Our housing service at John Smith House will no longer be taking walk in appointments. Please call 020 8724 8323, Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm, or email housingadviceservice@lbbd.gov.uk and we will make every effort to respond to you as soon as possible.

As a council we aim to support residents who are facing housing issues or homelessness. On this page you will find information about how to avoid homelessness or what to do if you are homeless.

Don’t leave things until they become a bigger problem. Follow the advice below but talk to us if you are threatened with homelessness.

Our priority is to prevent you from becoming homeless in the first place and we've developed a tool which will tell you what your housing options are in your circumstances.

Housing Options Finder tool


Below we offer some advice depending on your situation:

We can negotiate with your landlord to see if there is a way for you to stay in your home.  If you would like us to do so, please contact us on 020 8724 8323, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

We can also explain how you can find other privately rented accommodation.

You can also find properties on websites such as Rightmove,Zoopla,Spare Room,Room Buddies and Gumtree.

For more information and advice on your rights as a private tenant, please visit our private tenant rights page or if you have received an eviction notice or been asked to leave your current accommodation, the Citizens Advice Bureau can give advice and help you understand your legal rights.

Don’t wait until you are homeless to speak to us. If you are at risk of homelessness please contact us on 02087248323, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm, or email us on housingadviceservice@lbbd.gov.uk and we will try to help you work towards a resolution.

Information and advice on domestic abuse and sexual violence 

Housing Option Finder tool

If you are at risk of homelessness please contact us on 02087248323, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm, or email us on housingadviceservice@lbbd.gov.uk and we will try to help you work towards a resolution.

The Citizens Advice Bureau can give you benefits and debt advice and also help you understand your legal rights.

If you are on a low income, you can use the benefit calculator to check if you are entitled to help with benefits and your housing costs. 

Benefit calculator

You can also visit our money and debt pages for further information, advice, guidance and support.

Money and debt

if you are homeless please speak to us. Get in contact on 020 8724 8323, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm, or email us on housingadviceservice@lbbd.gov.uk. Alternatively, if you need to get in contact with us outside of regular hours, please contact 020 8215 3000.  You can also find out what options are available to you in your current circumstance by completing the Housing Options Finder tool.

Housing Option Finder tool

Shelter are the UK’s homeless and housing charity and offer a wide range of help and advice.

No Second Night Out aim to help those who are rough sleeping in London for the first time find an alternative.

Barking and Dagenham Citizens Advice Bureau offer legal advice to those facing becoming homeless.

Streetlink will help those already sleeping rough, so you can tell them if you are worried about someone.

Depaul UK Alone in London provides advice and support to 16 to 25 year olds who are at risk of homelessness.

Private rented housing is renting a property from a private landlord and is often the quickest way of getting housed.  You can find properties on websites such as Rightmove,Zoopla,Spare Room,Room Buddies and Gumtree.

To find out what options are available to you based on your current circumstance, please visit our Your Housing Options tool. It takes less than 10 minutes to complete if you have some basic information to hand.

Housing Option Finder tool

Unfortunately there are very few council homes available in Barking and Dagenham.  This means that most people who apply for a council home do not get one.

Even those in the greatest need may wait months or years to be offered accommodation.  This means that most people will be housed more quickly by renting from a private landlord.

If you are on a low income you may be able to get help with rent payments by claiming Housing Benefit or Universal Credit. 

To find out if you are eligible for social housing, you can find more information on our apply for social housing page.

Council tenants can use HomeSwapper mutual exchange register to search for suitable properties in their chosen area and registration is free for Barking and Dagenham council tenants.

Homefinder UK helps those already on the council waiting list or who are homeless, find permanent social housing in other parts of the country.

To find out what options are available to you based on your current circumstance, please visit our Your Housing Options tool. It takes less than 10 minutes to complete if you have some basic information to hand.

Housing Option Finder tool

Affordable housing is more affordable rented accommodation for working households where rents may be 65 or 85% of typical rent levels in that area.  There are also affordable housing schemes to help you buy a property.

The Housing Advice Service will only see residents who have called or emailed and made an appointment.  We see people at a range of locations.  Please call  020 872 48323 or email us on housingadviceservice@lbbd.gov.uk to make an appointment.

To find out what options are available to you based on your current circumstance, please visit our Your Housing Options tool. It takes less than 10 minutes to complete if you have some basic information to hand.

Housing Option Finder tool

We want to prevent homelessness wherever possible.  The Homelessness Reduction Act which was implemented in 2018, outlines the council’s duty to do so.

Homelessness Reduction Act

Organisations such as Shelter and Crisis also provide information on the Homelessness Reduction Act.