The type of emergency housing provided varies from council to council and might be a hostel, a refuge, Bed & Breakfast or even a flat owned by a private landlord.
The emergency housing should be suitable for you and your household. When deciding what is suitable, the council should consider the circumstances of you and all members of your household, including:
- how long you are likely to be there
- how much rent you can afford
- the condition and size of the accommodation
- where the accommodation is
- any health needs you may have
- social factors (such as whether you need to be close to support services, family or special schools).
Councils should offer Bed & Breakfast accommodation as a last resort and only for very short-term stays. If the council do offer you a Bed & Breakfast for emergency accommodation check that you will be able to use the room during the day and that you will have somewhere to cook a meal. Ask how long you are likely to be there and ask the council to move you somewhere more suitable as soon as possible.
If you are 16 or 17, or are a family with dependent children or are pregnant, you should only be placed in Bed and Breakfast in an emergency, and should not have to stay there for any longer than six weeks.
If you are offered somewhere that you don’t think is suitable, you should tell the council why you don’t think it is suitable. If the council doesn’t offer you anything else, get help. An adviser may be able to help you to convince the council that you should be offered something more suitable for your needs.
For more advice about the suitability of accommodation offered by the council, click here.