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Young parents

You may be entitled to benefits and help with housing and childcare if you are a young parent.

Housing options for young parents

There are lots of different options, which each have pros and cons. If you have children or are pregnant, you need to think carefully about what sort of place you need, and what you can realistically afford.

If you’ve nowhere to stay and need somewhere immediately, don’t panic. Check out your emergency options or call our helpline.

If you are homeless or in danger of losing your home in the next 56 days you should apply as homeless to your local council housing department as soon as you can. The council might have a duty to help you keep your current home, or perhaps help you to find somewhere else more suitable. Most parents and pregnant women are in priority need, so usually the council should offer you emergency housing whilst they are helping you.

If you fall into one of the priority need categories and the council do not consider you to be intentionally homeless, they will probably have to find you a home under the duty to secure accommodation.

If the council says that you made yourself homeless intentionally, get advice immediately. An adviser might be able to help you challenge the decision.

In some circumstances, where your household includes children or young people, the council may also have a duty to secure accommodation even if they have decided that you are intentionally homeless.

As a young parent you may also be entitled to help from social services, which could include accommodation.

Can I get financial help?

When you turn 18 you will be entitled to benefits. You should be able to claim housing benefit and either income support,  jobseeker’s allowance or universal credit if you need to.

Find out more about benefits from

If you are single, under 35, with no dependants and you rent from a private landlord, the maximum housing benefit you can get is the same rate you would get for renting a single room in a shared house. This is known as the ‘shared accommodation rate’ and it also applies when calculating the housing costs element under universal credit. This will affect you while you are pregnant, but once you have children other rules apply.

There are also special rules on housing benefit for students.

You may be entitled to ongoing financial support if you have been looked after by social services in the past. See our pages on Leaving care.

Where can I get more help?

If neither the council or social services can help you, call Shelter Cymru’s expert housing advice helpline. You could also email our housing advice team, or, if you prefer, visit advice near you to find a local Shelter Cymru advice surgery where you can talk to someone in person.

Take a look at our useful links for details of other organisations that might be able to help you.

Phone an adviser

If you have a housing problem, call our expert housing advice helpline.

Email an adviser

If you have a non-urgent problem and would like to speak to an adviser
email us

We are sorry that we cannot provide this information in Welsh, however if you would like to speak to an adviser in Welsh please contact 08000 495 495.

This page was last updated on: December 12, 2019

Shelter Cymru acknowledges the support of Shelter in allowing us to adapt their content. The information contained on this site is updated and maintained by Shelter Cymru and only gives general guidance on the law in Wales. It should not be regarded or relied upon as a complete or authoritative statement of the law.

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