Tips For Landlords That Are Considering DSS Tenants

Tips For Landlords That Are Considering DSS Tenants

In the past I’ve been very open about my feelings on housing DSS tenants – I don’t like doing it.

Obviously I’m not the only one either, because the amount of “DSS NOT ACCEPTED” disclaimers popping up seem to be increasing by the day. And with landlords being spoiled for choice with the huge demand for rental properties – it’s a renters market after all – DSS tenants will most likely be left at the back of the pile.

Initially, I really didn’t have a problem with accepting DSS tenants, but as I got more familiar with the system, I realised that the government has implemented a joke of a system which makes life difficult for both landlords and deserving social tenants. It’s infuriating. The system seems to encourage rogue activity.

No! I don’t have an issue with DSS tenants themselves, my gripe is with the system being as robust as a wet paper bag, and comically unfair! If you’re interested in watching a grown man weep, you can read more about my trials and tribulations over at my The Council Make It Impossible For DSS Tenants & Landlords blog post.

That said, I can understand why taking on DSS tenants may seem extremely tempting to some, especially from an empathetic point of view. So, for once, I’m going to refrain from ranting and raving about how much the Housing Benefit system sucks royal donkey anal slosh, but instead, share my top tips for [the few] landlords that are willing to take on social tenants and deal with the system.

1) Find out what the payment arrangements are

I’ve noticed that a lot of the time DSS tenants don’t actually know how the system works, so more often than not, they fabricate the truth on the fly. I advise always asking the following questions:

  1. Will your entire rent be covered, or will there be a shortfall you will need to cover?
  2. By which method will rent be paid to me?
  3. I want the rent every month, on the 1st. Is that possible? On what date will I receive the rent?

The tenant probably won’t know the answer to all those questions because it’s down to the local council, but it’s always interesting to know their answers. Usually, the answers are very telling in regards to what kind of individual you’re dealing with.

2) Is there a shortfall? If so, can your tenant realistically cover it?

I’m not certain, but I’m pretty sure the vast majority of those receiving Housing Benefit will need to cover a shortfall. For example, their rent may be £500 per month, but they may receive £400 in housing allowance per month, therefore they’ll be expected to cover the £100 deficit out of their own pocket. I’ve yet to come across a DSS tenant that hasn’t had to cover a shortfall.

Make sure you find out how much shortfall they have to cover, and whether they can afford it.

3) The tenant’s rental history

Everyone has a history, and many DSS tenants have rental history. Find out where they lived before, and why they’re moving from their previous accommodation.

It’s always good when DSS tenants have previous landlords because it allows for references. In fact, I personally wouldn’t feel comfortable taking on any tenant that doesn’t have a rental history – I find them extremely telling. Specific questions to ask previous landlords, to name a few:

  • Did you have any problems from them?
  • Did they treat the property well?
  • Did everything run smoothly with the payments? Were there any delays?

4) Understand what you’re signing up to

I advise anyone who is taking on DSS tenants to be completely familiar with the setup. I made a vital mistake of taking on a DSS tenant without doing any research. As a naïve landlord, when the concept of a DSS tenant was first introduced to me, all I kept thinking was, “this sounds like guaranteed rent!” – of course, that’s how it was being sold to me [by a cowboy letting agent].

“guaranteed rent” couldn’t be further from the truth.

A previous DSS tenant of mine received £600 per month for her housing allowance, whilst the rent was £700, which meant she had to cover a £100 shortfall.

The council doesn’t actually pay the landlords on a PCM (per calendar month) basis, they pay every 30 days! That’s extremely awkward because NO normal landlord charges on a per day basis, consequently keeping on top of payments can get tricky. You’ll find yourself collecting 2 payments every month on different dates. It doesn’t sound complicated, but trust me, it soon does.

Anyways, perhaps you can deal with it, but my point is, make sure you’re aware of what you’re dealing with.

5) Council tax

If you take on a DSS tenant, make sure you inform the local council tax office. In fact, you should do that when you take on any new tenant.

SILLY ME, I assumed that the social housing department communicates with the local tax office since they are operated by the same local council, and both departments deal with housing, but apparently not.

When I had a DSS tenant move in, I got billed for the council tax, which was actually the responsibility of the tenant to pay. I called up the relevant tax department and said that my DSS tenant is liable to pay that bill, not me. The lady on the other end basically said that I should have declared the new tenant.

Anyways, lesson learned.

6) Don’t get DSS tenants from a Letting Agent

Letting agents notoriously charge a ridiculous amount of money to find tenants for landlords, so in return we should expect high quality tenants.

However, experience has shown that certainly isn’t the case. In the past, I’ve paid letting agents through the nose to find me tenants and they’ve tried to palm me off with social tenants.

Now, I’m not saying there is anything wrong with DSS tenants, but what I am saying is that they’re objectively not “high quality”, and moreover, any landlord can contact their local Housing Benefit Office and get a DSS tenant for FREE. So what’s the point of paying a letting agent 12%-16% of your yearly rental income for the pleasure of doing FUCK ALL?

Letting agents often genuinely take advantage of landlords that don’t know any better. So if you’re using a letting agent, and they offer you a DSS tenant, refuse to pay them for doing you no favours at all!

If you’re happy to accept DSS tenants, my advice is to use a free classified website like Gumtree (the place is running rampant with social tenants) or contact your local housing benefits department.

7) Be warned, the Housing Benefit SUCKS

I know I said I wasn’t going to lose my shit over the Housing Benefit departing sucking (hard), but I’d be remiss if I didn’t make a definitive point about it, just to make this blog post complete.

I feel it’s imperative for every landlord to be aware of how infuriating it can be to deal with these people when things turn sour.

Whenever I had problems with a DSS tenant, I always found myself getting literally no support from the local authorities. They were less than useless. Even when I told them my tenant was committing benefit fraud, they didn’t seem to give a shit. I’ve had so many terrible and disheartening experiences that’s made me lose complete faith in the system.

So be warned, when things turn sour, don’t expect much help from the government. Sure, they’ll try their hardest to house the vulnerable, but there’s no after care for landlords.

Don’t believe me? Here’s more from people over at the thisismoney forums (link removed because thread has been removed from their forum), bitching about the shitty nature of the Social Housing team.

8) Request direct rental payments

Back in the day, when the system was a little more sensible, landlords were able to receive rent directly from the Housing Benefit department. But new procedures have crept in, and now, by default, tenants get paid directly, which means it’s become their responsibility to pass on the rent to the landlord.

I know what you’re thinking, “recipe for disaster”, right?


It essentially encouraged a whole heap of rent arrears, because many didn’t pay their rent. Who didn’t see that coming a mile off?

However, I believe it’s still possible for landlords to receive rent directly, so I would recommend getting this arranged if possible.

If you do agree to accept a social tenant, the tenant will need to inform the local council, and in return complete certain forms with all the relevant details of the tenancy. In one of the forms, there is a question which asks whether they want the rent paid to them [the tenant] or the landlord.

This is something you will need to discuss with the tenant prior to making any agreements, but it’s reasonable to make that a condition of the tenancy, in my opinion.

9) Permission for landlord to enquire

Similarly to my point above [regarding the recipient of rent payments], in one of the forms, they’ll be an optional tick box, which will give permission for the landlord to enquire about the tenant’s Housing Benefit status. This way the landlord can chase up any problems without relying on the tenant.

I’ve already mentioned how useless the council is at passing on information, so it’s strongly advised for this permission to be granted!


DSS tenants are ultimately like any other tenants, they both come in all shapes and sizes, and there’s a few rotten apples amongst all. However, there are just a few extra “quirks” landlords should be aware of when it comes to DSS and social tenants.

Don’t get me wrong, taking on DSS tenants can be extremely fruitful; I know many landlords that have plenty of positive stories to share. However, I will say one thing though, if the government tightens up their system by offering landlords a better service, there’d be a hell of a lot more people willing to accept social tenants.

So that pretty much covers my top tips for those that want to take on DSS tenants. If anyone has additional tips, please let me know, and I’ll pile it onto the list.

118 Join the Conversation...

Showing 68 - 118 comments (out of 118)
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Sugarbabe 2nd July, 2010 @ 12:47

the above was in my local newspaper last week for private rented. Good luck! Don't forget the Tenant Service Authority with their new stuff on laws etc for ALL landlords ad Tenants.

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Sugarbabe 2nd July, 2010 @ 13:03

You can also check out all housing areas/how good they are etc for Social housing on Tenant Service Authority. Some larger HA's can be monster landlords with 'Common Purpose' involved within their hierachy and Banksters on their Boards, this can cause them to behave corruptly and fail in their duties, and some make up their own propaganda of doing this and that and it never happens-they say they are exempt from parting with informations so they can bury what they do not want seen.

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mel 10th July, 2010 @ 00:17

hi, i have just read all of the above, i want to make it clear that i am on dss benifits, not through choice, i want to just say we are not all bad and we are clean, tidy and always pay the rent. i really do wish that people wouldnt tar us all with the same brush, i dont have a 5 bed house with 10 children running around with 5 fathers collecting them on a weekend, i dont take drugs, i dont drink, im not a party animal and i havent just come out of prison, im finding it really hard to move now as people dont accept dss, its not my fault that others behave like this and give the good people a bad name. we all deserve a place to live, but also i want others to think about this what about the bad landlords...... the place i live now is on the market (reason for moving) we have had nothing but problems from landlord, he just turns up when he feels, he goes through my post even thought he doesnt even live with me, he checks my walls behind the sofa to even see if i have cleaned. he calls me late at night to ask me if i have paid the bills (personal bills), i have even found him on the doorstep at 8am asking me if i would be happy for one of his friends to sleep on my sofa as he didnt have anywhere else to go, this is all so worng and i would never expect it to happen again, due to me moaning to the council about it as this wasnt the best way to treat a tenant, he then paid someone to put a brick through his own window to scare me and let my tires down on my car. so maybe its not all dss tenants that are bad, maybe people need to look at the landlords aswell. (oh and btw if anyone will have me i am looking for a 1 bed property in borough of merton asap!!!) we arnt all bad, just sometimes unlucky in life !!! (sorry to go on)

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Jools 10th July, 2010 @ 08:38

Hey Mel,

So sorry to hear about your t*** of a LL. It's tossers like him that give us good ones such a bad name. What he has done is illegal and I would suggest you contact your local housing office.

He is not allowed to turn up when he wants, interfering with your post is a criminal offence, he has trespassed and breached the quiet enjoyment clause of the Housing Act and to ask if a friend could sleep on your sofa is just nuts.

Go speak to someone at the council and demand they do something - mind you they are such a lazy bunch of Bastards they will probably do F all!

Good luck to you in finding a new home.


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bigdlandlord 26th July, 2010 @ 07:25

i am a landlord and have 6 properties
i do not take on housing benefit tenants and i appologise for that openly if someone asks.
the reason is because out of all of the tenants i have taken on, the only ones i have had problems with are tenants who are unemployed and have not worked for a while, and im not just talking about rent arrears, its damage to the property and abuse to neighbours and me. i genuinely feel sorry for people who need to claim housing benefit and are good tenants because this certain genre of people are making it bad for all hb claimants, i have now started to accept hb tenants BUT i insist on a 6 month deposit and will only sign a six month tenancy, (no takers so far)im afraid its the only way i can cover for all of the problems i get from tenants who are on the dole and suddenly get a cheque for £600 come through the door - its just too tempting for them, and have you ever tried to get any sense out of the housing benfit dept when it starts going wrong ??

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Sugarbabe 26th July, 2010 @ 09:29

Well now there is to be a clamp down isn't there with the Coalition and a set sum of rent for landlords/HB. How on earth do you expect any person on this type of benefit to give you six months rent up front?

Anyone on Beneftis is living below the Poverty line no matter what people may read about all the thousands which is based on large families who each are able to claim for individual children.

There are also many thousands we are told by Citizens Advice Bureaux that go unclaimed each year.

There are good areas and bad areas with rental properties and there are equally bad landlords who don't give a monkey's about keeping their properties up to a decent enough standard-housing associations included-despite the new rules out with the Tenant Service Authority.

I for one would not entertain a bad area,you sound as if you might 'attract' rough end of HB claimants.

Like you say there are some decent nice people too.

I don't know if it is legal to take six months money up front when someone is claiming housing benefits in any case-if they had that kind of money anyway.

It is a basic Human Right to have a peaceful place to live and to be looked after if needed by Social-yet the media paints them as if they are criminals sometimes.

Lets face it there is not enough proper jobs with high enough income and often people can become very depressed especially if their education is limited too they see no hope out there,and moreso if it is what they were brought up like on sink estates or high rise flats,ugh perish the thought,isolated from mainstream society.

It has all been created this way by the elite to make a divided Society. Self sufficiency has been taken away from people.

Lets hope that manufacturing rears back up again.

Society is class ridden-by Govt's. People rely on money and have lost all natural animal like skills to set up home on land that should be Free to all-it is nature after all,although some man made now,that said we are charged for Water too which is of nature,such is mans greed.

People have been shackled by the elites into believing 'this is it' as good as it gets-instead of freeing their minds of the material world as do Buddhists.

It's why we have violence and drugs are allowed as are guns and knives out there in society so that they can kill one another,it's been created this way for new world order,depopulate. They made up rules and regulations to twist things out of all proportion,to fabricate, and to cause disorder. Sorry for the rant!

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Sugarbabe 26th July, 2010 @ 09:30

Not all areas of the country i.e Councils give money to Tenants-some do still do the transfer to landlord.

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chelz 26th July, 2010 @ 12:44

I posted a few months ago after now being on the waiting list for 2 and a half years!!! still havent got anywhere!! we have now been given a chance at private renting! the council refused to help with the deposit etc due to funding cuts... which is awful feels like i have to be lazy to get anywhere... i voted for change and have currently got nowhere!!! and it seems to have got worse.. i thought the people who work hard will be rewarded? just so happens my parents came though and offered us the money we need to get started... of course we will strill claim HB as my husband who works so hard full time doesnt get a fantastic wage!!! which cannot be helped due to the lack of jobs... hes lucky to have one.. we have waited so long for a landlord to take a chance and will hopefully change there mind on DSS tennants as we are just a family in need of a home!!! i think asking for six months rent is awful!! why not ask the people who want to rent about themselves, find out more.. after all we are NOT all that bad!

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Dee Dubb 27th July, 2010 @ 07:44

Firstly congrats to Chelz and her family. I hope you are able to enjoy your new start, and that you get on with your new neighbours. Which can also be a big issue, If they feel that a tenanted propery next door is devaluing their own property they can strike up funny and make it hard. Please look after your new landlords good will. You sound like you can...
Going back to Sugarbabes comment aout being charged for water , the charge is obviously for the installation and maintenance of pipelines and the purification process etc, but greed does come into it at a government level. The same is true of some landlords, and has you say Housing Ass, which have increased in numbers because the L,As are trying to rid themselves of their responsibily for the homeless. Lets face it Goverment has introduced lot's of restrictions and so called tenant's rights and decent home standards that are too costly for some L,A's to afford without raising Council Taxes etc. In areas that are already depressed any way, allied with the policy to allow Right-to-buy( lots of which are now being rented out privately) and the L.As not being allowed by central government to use the money raised to build new council housing to replace the houses sold, these have been the death nell for social housing owned by your L.A.
Hence the push to get tenants to transfer to private or assocition schemes. Decent Homes and Tenants right's are important to maintain, and in fact levels raised and yes I did say " So Called" because when the alternative is a Box on the street their has to be some reasoning applied.
I remember seeing a news report on t.v where a builder who had expierianced homelessness was annoyed with his L.A who had emptied houses in an area of Toksteth in order that they could be knocked down for redevelopment which the L.A were to get a grant for ( having already had one grant for the re-siting of tenants etc). Government change of plan - No second grant - no development. The builder offered to refurbish the houses at a limited cost ( if I remember correctly less than £3000. ) His offer was refused. Probably because the L.A had spent the grant on other thing's OBVIOUSLY MORE IMPORTANT THAN HOUSING, and they would probably have had to return the Grant if they had allowed him to carry out the work.. The system is all wrong and the government should be representing our interest' Tenant and Landlord..But we can't seem to get the message across. My garbled rant over. sorry ..

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Dee Dubb 27th July, 2010 @ 08:44

Looking back at my Rant I haven't expained why Ive said "So Called Tenant's Right's"
What I mean is that when a central Government introduce these rules they monitor them and L.A's have to tick boxes to show they are introducing the Policise. So some tenants rights affect other tenant's rights who are at the time not being monitored by Cent Gov.
The relevant issue here is that Cent Gov have listened to the Civil Liberties argument that tenants should have the right to control their finances, and because there are less than responsible tenants not paying their rent now others are suffering.
The only reason Cent Gov agreed isn't because they want people to take control of their actions and finance, it's because L.A's can save money and reduce job's by doing it that way.. and has the call for "CHANGE" made it any easier for homeless, NO!

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Sugarbabe 27th July, 2010 @ 13:32

Hi Chelz & Dee Dubb. Lets face it life is never on the side of poor folks who do have a Human Right to have a roof over their heads-so Chelz Google Human Rights and go present it to your MP along with your story and in fact also send to David Cameron at No 10. Sometimes in this life we need to be more pro active,in fact put your story in your local newspaper too, to highlight.

HA's can be rogues mostly and seem to be exempt from Freedom of Information Act unlike Councils-this allows them to get away with not doing what they should and hiding stuff-just like Social Services will 'close' a case down and lock it away so that any sudden Independent Inspection doesn't catch them off guard for their dirty deeds of negligence.

HA's have been leaving older properties empty for too long and not doing the works needed for re lets. Then they haven't been building like they should and if my memory serves me well it is a Corporate affair worth around £10 billion in Profits-or was-there have been cut backs and staffings have been thinned out again in order to remain in business,cos that is where it is wrong it's a Corporate Business...they DO NOT CARE about people. I've been reliably informed that HA's will get much less monies from Govt's in future-but they do borrow Privately and do have Bankers sitting on their Boards-so you can see potential for corruption. It does not bode well for future of poor people. So they may build but it is called Affordable but truth is it is not affordable to poor end of Society. What will happen then death camps for people made homeless or slow death from malnutrition grovelling on our streets-then come the 2012 Olympics will they be trodden down on.

Best to have Business Studies under your belt and go to Uni and then into OIL.

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Twattybollocks 27th July, 2010 @ 13:46

Human Right to have a roof over their heads? What bollocks. A human right to get off their arses and do something productive or useful for society and then be housed more like.

Where is your "reliably informed" opinion coming from? You prepared to name names Sugarbabe? Thought not!

Anyway, currently sitting in Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse drinking Sir Richards champagne after buying tickets paid for by my tenants. To you landlords out there I raise my glass and salute you!!


PS - Am I Bad?

PPS - Sugarbabe - go get laid or something cos girl, you are uptight!

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Sugarbabe 27th July, 2010 @ 14:14

Emma sorry you live in bad area. I live in HA's property that was sold on from LA but in an exceptionally good quiet area,most are bought too.I am a decent law abiding OAP who through no fault of my own have chronic sickness and high values, but it would not be my choice to be stuck in this rotten system,the houses were sold off for around £2-£3,000 each-which makes it a rotten to the core system that then makes ordinary hardworking people pay a hefty mortgage for many thousands more,like £145,000-£150,000. To me that is Criminal.
Trouble is the HA is a lousy corrupt one. TSA Tenant Service Authority have on their website all the various areas and how the HA's measure up so then you can now get a picture of who is good and who is bad.

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Sugarbabe 27th July, 2010 @ 14:23

What a rude person you are twattybollocks as name suggests.As for your dirty money it really doesn't bother me one bit- you enjoy your life! Go Google Human Rights.

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chelz 27th July, 2010 @ 15:13

HOW RUDE!!! we do work really hard actually!! my husband works all the hours god sends and doesnt get paid what he deserves... me i look after my daughter because i have no trust in the people who they expect me to leve her with.. the media took care of that!! we dont want anything for free we pay our way and up until i had my daughter i did too! also i dont claim a single benefit for myself...only 1tax credits and cb which i would get if i was working anyway!!! you sit and drink ur champagne and we will all live in the real world! dont mark us all with the same brush as every person is differnt! and thankyou everyone else.. i think i will take it further!!

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Dee Dubb 27th July, 2010 @ 16:24

Hi Twatty bollocks and what sort of tenant would you be if you were on DSS..I wonder.??? Think the landlord would have his hands full there. Probably Champagne and heat gone to your head. If some folk let the DSS side down you are letting the landlord's side down. Probably a flash getwith a BMW who think's he's rich..

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Sugarbabe 27th July, 2010 @ 20:50

Good for you Chelz that's the spirit. All children need someone at home with them and don't you feel guilty over it-hey a lovely Headmistress who never married but is not alive anymore but lived her life fully for other peoples children and travelled said to me every child needs one parent at home for them. Don't let anyone on a silly 'trip' blow you away!!motherhood is underated but it is the most important job that there is cos all kiddies need love and guidance for many years and need nursing when poorly and to feel secure and warm and fed and clothed, and if someone is rich in the material life they are not necessarily rich in the spiritual sense and without that then there is no point to life if you are selfish arrogant person without feeling for anyone but self.

Precisely Dee Dubb!

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Suze 20th November, 2010 @ 11:09

I would like to point out that not all people receiving Housing Benefit are unemployed, I am in full time employment & I work very hard. My Housing Benefit is the shortfall I get to pay what I am unable to being a single mum (through no fault of my own), I have my HB paid directly to me & I then pay my LL every month on time & have never defaulted on my rent. I live my life to the best I can with the little I have, & I am a considerate neighbour. My LL (who is fantastic) doesn't even know I am on benefits. If he did he probably would never have taken me on, which is a shame. I think all tenants should be taken on by private LL's based on references from previous LL's, not weather they are DSS claimants or not.

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Sugarbabe 20th November, 2010 @ 11:58

Just think though Suze you are meeting the shortfall and if you told him now he would surely be proud of the fact you are not irresponsible and that you have kept to your agreement. What normal thinking person would put their child at risk of eviction.Good luck to you, you can hold your head up high.

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Boydy 22nd March, 2011 @ 12:34

i rent out a 3 bed semi it was my house before i had to move for business reasons.
We had put it on the market but were approached by friends of our next door neighbours who asked us if they could rent from us instead.
We had no experiance in this field whatsoever and unfortunatley took them at their word.
They receive housing benefit but are not paying the rent they won't answer our phone calls and just keep sending text messages with excuses but no rent !
I have a tenancy agreement with them and have sent them an eviction notice, yet apparently i havent a leg to stand on.
So annoying i work hard and am now paying Two morgages while they sit back with no intention of working and receive benefits they should be passing on to me and keep them for themselves.
Anyone got any helpful suggestions?

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dave c 13th August, 2011 @ 13:08

the attitude of this article is disgusting, learn some manners.

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OAA 20th October, 2011 @ 23:41

Hello I am a dss tenent, I live in a hostal because nobody wants me, I am a very quiete girl, sometiimes I recieve visits from my country... this happened to me, the landlady drive crazy... she threaten me and kick me out of the house violently, I have a video, the sistem sucks, but people like this is all over London, I had to go to benefits because I was facing redundancy, but there is no respect to people anymore... watch the video please.

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David Booth 24th November, 2011 @ 21:11

If you want to take a DSS tennant on and worried about not being paid try our service read below

I would like to take my time to introduce you to our new company Tasker Payment Services. The company is designed as a one of it's kind payment service for DSS claimants and their landlords. Customers who do not have a bank account, or have large overdrafts eating into their Local Housing Allowance can use our service to have the peace of mind that their rent is paid straight to their landlord's bank account on time, every time.
With much experience in dealing with such payments, landlords can rely on Tasker Payment Services to provide them and their tenants with a reliable and secure way of receiving their rent.
We are fully registered with the FSA (registration number 564939) and can be found on the FSA's register of payment service providers.

The idea behind our company is simple the tennant agrees to pay our company (Tasker Payment Services) the money they get from the LHA and the landlord gets paid from us fortnightly. All we take £4.00 transaction fee for transferring the money to the landlords bank account.
This also helps out the council because they dont have to deal with arrears and it could help the council because more landlords would want to register because they know they are going to get paid.
If you would like to visit our website and read a little more about us if you have any questions please feel free to ask.

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DeeDubb 24th November, 2011 @ 21:45

And What do you do when a tenant changes their mind and stops the direct payment being made to you..Has is there choice.. Anyone can arrange payments to be made directly but can't guarantee the such arrangement won't be changed after tenancy has been signed up. Not all DSS tenants do this but some do. ???

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DeeDubb 24th November, 2011 @ 21:55

OAA, Your video is an example of what the benefits system is generating. People can't convince decent Landlords that the are a good prospect which means rogue Landlords can use ruthless methods to evict a tenant when and for what they like. The old system whilst not perfect, was more reassuring and DSS tenants were more welcome.

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David Booth 24th November, 2011 @ 22:35

Dee Dubb,

The tennant cant change their mind because the money doesnt see the tennant it is paid directly from the council straight to tasker payment services and TPS process the payment therefore guranteeing the landlord gets their payment ontime everytime! theres lots of credit unuions doing this on a daily basis the only problem with credit unions is they are tied to council areas TPS isn't!

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David Booth 24th November, 2011 @ 22:42

Dee Dubb,

Read the forms on TPS website you will see what has to be signed...The next question you are probably going to ask well what if the tennant doesn't agree well as the landlord you can say well if you dont agree to use TPS then you cant have the house you as the landlord have rights!
Another question you may have what if a tenant is already in there basically you say to the tennant we are changing the way we operate our payments etc etc and now using these people and we would like you to complete the following forms there are ways andmeans about everything!

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Benji 25th November, 2011 @ 10:56

Next question; What happens when you go bust?
E.g You build up 3 or 4 months of all your punter's rent money and then disappear to Spain with it overnight.
Payment services are not covered by the FSA financial services compensation scheme.

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Hope 19th December, 2011 @ 18:47

I am on benefits because i have mental health issues that prevent me from working. I was made homeless after my father passed away and his house was repossessed. I was in a homeless hostel for 9 months, before it closed down and i was forced to rent in the private sector, because i have no children, and therefore am considered low priority for council housing.

It took a very long time to find a landlord willing to take me on, because i'm on benefits. I insisted that my rent is paid directly to the landlord, because i do not like the responsibility of handling large amounts of money. The council make this difficult to do. I had to get my GP and psychologist to write letters stating that i cannot be trusted with large amounts of money (even though that's not necessarily true) just to get the rent paid direct to landlord.

I am a good tenant. My mental health issues mean that i clean obsessively, and i have never broken anything or caused any problems for neighbours, although the downstairs neighbours did open my post several times and have given me a lot of abuse, because they found out i was on benefits. There is such a stigma attached to being on benefits.

Now, the law is changing and i will no longer be able to afford the flat i am renting. I have to find somewhere new to live, and it looks like an impossibility on the new proposed rate of housing benefit, without even contemplating the hell that is finding landlords who will take me on as a tenant.

All DSS tenants are tarred with the same brush. I am going to be made homeless, and will have nowhere to turn. My mental health issues are as a result of a life full of physical, mental and sexual abuse. I feel like i've been brought into this world just to suffer.

I would urge any landlords reading this to reconsider taking DSS tenants. If a tenant has positive character references from reliable sources and references from previous landlords, is it not worth considering helping some of societies most vulnerable people at a time when they are desperate for someone to prove that human kindness still exists?


Kind Regards,


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Jeremy 20th December, 2011 @ 01:13

Hello Hope,

I'm sorry to read your story but glad to see you're trying to plan your way out of bother. I have nothing to offer you (I'm fully rented out) so my thoughts are:
1 - If you want a landlord on the board to help you, tell us which town you live in;
2 - Get a written character reference from your existing landlord;
3 - If you are very clean and keep your nose out of trouble then think about doing a deal with your existing landlord. Bearing in mind the bad reputation DSS tenants have with many landlords (that's a fact - I don't want to spark a debate over whether it's actually fair or not) you're probably one of his best, hassle free tenants. He may be prepared to accept a lower rent from you because he knows he'll make as much profit on a lower rent as a normal rent from a replacement tenant who's an unknown quantity. If your mental problems make it difficult to haggle, how's about getting your physcologist to help?

I hope these thoughts help.

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DeeDubb 3rd April, 2012 @ 11:33

Hi to you all, I know that my next comments are not going to help the image of tenants on HB. Sorry for that. My son-in-law has just had a very bad expieriance with a tenant, All their referances checked out and he had no reason to doubt their integrity, his rent was being paid up front so all was good for three months or so. Until he got a call from the police to say the property was insecure. It turns out the police had raided the house and caved the door in. His tenants had not been living their, but had left one immigrant person to look after a cannabis factory. It beggars belief that the gang were making loads of money and still claiming HB. Is it so hard for the government to set up a system that help the needy and filters out the greedy. More Checks and Visits is what is needed but it against a persons human rights. The protection of Some peoples human rights are making more peoples lifes harder.
p.s My son-in-law will now loose out equivelant to the region of 9 to 10 months rent, and still have to pay his mortgage. He works away and has rented his house to cover his expenses, but now feel the risk is too high and will not let it again. Sad for people who can't get a home I know but has he say's people murder for drugs and drug wars, and his neighbours who are friends who have children. A one off incident maybe, lets hope so.
Dee Dubb

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digger 4th May, 2012 @ 14:41

i have 6 dss tenents i dont take deposits and only get 58 quid a week from each of them. how they going to make rent up on the sh't money they get? nice when you can be good to other people ent it. i have a good bunch of lads shame i ent got more houses yet

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digger 4th May, 2012 @ 14:48

another one for you all . i have a working couple next door to me who rent one of my houses and hes leaving as he said he dont want to live next door to a couple who smokes a bit of weed in there garden and that there lower glass to him as he works there dss tenents ???? proper pratt then is son come over and smokes one outside when there out lol whot a cheeky twat so youy get good and bad in all

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Bibbel 12th June, 2012 @ 12:20

I am a private landlord, moving into a house with my partner and letting my house for the first time. I was adamant not to use DSS for many reasons highlighted but have a wonderful mature single parent who has seperated with her husband and needs a home.She is going on benefits for the first time. We all have been open about it and she works part time on a temp contract.I am nervous about how it will work long term, but I am prepared to give it a chance because,decent honest people can get into trouble sometimes and we could do with a break now and then....i hope my honest and upfront approach will work longterm. I have rented in the past and had awful experience with the letting agent...(who don't care about you AT ALL) If within the first 6 months this is not working, we have agreed to part ways. I think it is importnat to do checks but some of it comes down to your instinct and judgement of a person. It is important to have detailed discussions and get to know the person more than just about their financial status. i would rather have a decent human being that respects my home and may need some support when it gets a bit tough.This is business at the end of the day and the key thing is a good relationship......that builds trust and loyalty long term.

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Jeremy 14th June, 2012 @ 22:07

Hello Bibbel: Please can you come back to us in six months time and let us know how things go for you. Best wishes...

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Anonymous 11th January, 2013 @ 22:11

Hi, I'm in a tricky situation with DSS tenants. The council have stopped their rent to me for unknown reasons (all the council have done is send me two letters with circumstances have changed - working on why - NOT!) And if you need to know more ask your tenant (yeh right) they are just a bunch of fraudulent cheating bastards and give the finger to any questions and just say stop rushing me and this is harassment. Question is what can I do and what is the likely hood of getting all the arrears + rent left due back? The council as u say are an arse!! Why is the law on the side of benefit claiming scum when they cheat the system and commit theft from the Landlord but the innocent, law abiding, educated, respecful landlord with morals (the tenants have none by the way!) get screwed!?? any guidance welcome

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Jeremy 20th January, 2013 @ 17:21

Hello Anonymous,

The short, and maybe unwelcome answer, is that you are very unlikely to get your arrears and rent back. The actions you need to take now mus be focused on minimising your future losses you've not yet incurred. Sorry.

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hay 4th August, 2013 @ 15:50

Very biased against DSS tenants. So what about the other flip of the coin? We're DSS tenants who were relocated 80 miles from London by our council only to find the Lettings Agents lied and our contract of Tenancy wasn't legal - they had already breached it before we got here and the Landlords threatened to put the house on the market and sell it with us still in it two months into us arriving, pumps us for information against his Lettings Agents but won't cooperate with us or take responsibility that he's liable for employing a dodgy Lettings Agent or repaying our removal costs to get here which we're now told he is responsible for as well as the erroneous months deposit the Lettings Agent took off us and which we are advised is fraud. Both Agent and Landlord have disrupted our lives with two small children in tow. Effectively between them they have made us homeless!

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martin 10th April, 2015 @ 15:51

I wanted to give my property to homeless people the day said they have good tenants for it, well it all went wrong they didn't even fill the forms in properly no rent for 3 months dss went bothered.

I know not all dss are lowlife but I have had four bad experience so would never do it again.

If you want to invest on property invest in dubai you get the rent for one year in advance if they trash your place they go to jail roi10% return I am planning to sell my 18 houses in the uk and invest more in dubai.

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Helen 24th April, 2015 @ 23:46

I recently called the DSS to find some information about a problem with a tenant. I was told that when a DSS tennant rents council property that the rent is paid directly to them! What happened to the tenant being made responsible for their own finances in these situations?

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Gracious 17th September, 2015 @ 18:09

First time landlord and we currently have two interested parties one a dss claimant who has a small child and secondly two guy who already rent a house together + who are employed. Basically I'm so kind hearted that I can't help but want to help this woman. I'm probably gonna be kicking myself in a couple of months time reading all this as I just can't understand how she's going to afford the shortfall. The property were renting out is currently our family home and it makes me feel sick that a)my family home could possibly be wrecked b) that she may not pay then eventually get her evicted and she will be homeless again (well moving back into emergency housing again) with a small child.What makes me feel even more sick is that I could even be considering judging someone on this basis and being a c**t and not renting to her. The moral dilemmas of being a clue what to do.

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Michelle 28th October, 2015 @ 15:21

I know nobody has posted on this thread for few years now but I agree with a few comments that both people looking to rent and landlords have posted on here.

I have a little girl and live at my childhood home with my parents still.. my room is just big enough for a wardrobe, cot and my single bed. I do claim benefits as well as work as self employed and im pretty much a maid to pay my way for rent (do parents shopping, all cleaning, pay for mine and my daughters food and nappies ect as well as help my mum with her business doing admin work for her and my own job) Growing up I suffered domestic abuse and relationships in my home are strained due to this but we are a 'well off' sort of family with parents owning a home, not the typical council tenants.

It's coming to the point where I am doing so much around the house for my parents to pay our way that I need to get me and my daughter into our own place for both our sakes and health as by the end of the day I am so run down I hardly have time to spend with her. The tension in the house and controlling atmosphere I do not want my little one around and the council is not interested in helping at all.

It frustrates me as their hasn't been any places on the council to bid on for over a month and they tell you 'we prefer you to privately rent' but offer under the actual housing allowance for the area and no estate agents or landlords are interested as soon as you mention anything about DSS.

If only their were a way to prove to the landlord that when your in a situation where you need to get out you'd move heaven and earth to make sure the rent is paid on time, I have OCD so I know that the property would be in better condition when I leave that what it would be when I arrived.

I understand their are a lot of people out their who take the p**s with it all and their is no excuses to mess properties up and destroy somebody else's things when they have worked hard to get them. It angers me that their are people out their who have screwed it up for us but I do think that landlords should meet all tenants before the tenancy is signed so they can decided for themselves DSS or Not!!!!

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DeeDubb 29th October, 2015 @ 15:00

Hi Michelle, It is sad to hear of your plight, I hope you can find someone who trusts you enough to take you on as a tenant. You said you suffered abuse when you were young, I don't know if you would wish to, go down this route, but is it possible to present yourself to the local housing authority as fleeing abuse or violence, for your your child's sake. Also it may help if you could arrange for the landlord to receive payment direct. After all it's not much different to paying by direct debit. You may need to lie and say you can't be trusted to manage your own finances. Good luck.

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Michelle 6th November, 2015 @ 01:23

Hiya Deedubb,

I have explained my situation to local council but there's such a shortage of council properties to rent that they are unable to move me out any quicker.

Unfortunately I have said this to the estate agents, I have gone to viewings before telling them I'll be part paying with dss just so they can meet me and get a feel of my personality first. I have also said about a larger deposit or even meeting landlords before hand but they all turn their nose up and refuse to go further. It's disheartening that we are almost treated like scum as soon as we mention anything about dss it doesn't help that housing prices are so dear where I am (greater London) nobody can rent or buy unless they've brought at the right time or been given inheritance or a hand from parents !! :(

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Landlord 4th December, 2015 @ 09:29

I was just going through some of your old posts and came across this one. I thought I would share my recent (naive) experience with a DSS tenant.

I was approached by a young couple, feeling from their old property where 'the ceiling was falling down, festered with damp' etc etc. The wife was apparently also pregnant. A really woolly, tear-jerking story was given.

I took them, allowed them to rent out of good faith and as a good samaritan. The property had recently been purchased and was in pristine condition, recently refurbished etc.

The couple fell into arrears straight away and whilst giving every excuse under the sun, waited until the second cheque from the council was sent to them, before they mysteriously disappeared one night. I got suspicious so went down to check on the property - no answer. Phone calls wouldnt go through anymore. Everything just came to a deadlock.

On entering the property, it was apparent they had left in a hurry - taken all of their belongings and leaving the property completely trashed. They were only there for just over 2 months! They had even managed to burn the paint off the door frames with what seemed like a cigarette lighter (even though the agreement clearly stated no smoking in the property).

I took the matter to the council and was told there was nothing they could do and that if the tenants did come up on their system that they were rent somewhere else - they would still be entitled to benefits (despite not paying this to the landlord!). I was furious to say the least.

I am now in a situation where not only have I lost a large sum of money, but I have to pay an even larger amount to fix the house up again.

My mistakes were big and whilst I cannot paint all DSS tenants with the same brush, i'll be making sure I don't make the same mistake twice.

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Flo 27th May, 2016 @ 17:01

I am in alcohol rehabilitation. One of my 'peers' needs somewhere to stay when he leaves as he can not get a 'half way' house. I have a flat which I rent out and the last tenant has just moved out. I am very happy to have him as a DHS tenant as I know he is a lovely, responsible man and he needs help which I can give.

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Wynlar 23rd June, 2016 @ 21:15

Hi to all,
I am a new landlord and can sympathise with the good tenants and also back up the landlords which do not take the risk of not getting paid their rent.
I am looking into a way of taking on DSS with guaranteeing the rent being paid every month whether paid by the housing or tenants.
If anyone has any comments on this I will happily listen.

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David Pickston 27th October, 2016 @ 12:30

I would recommend anyone considering letting to tenants receiving benefits check this site. It is (presently) the easiest Housing Allowance Rates calculator to use:

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Michael Farrie 12th June, 2017 @ 15:24

Could I wade in?
I do think "No DSS" should be illegal, not to mention that it long ceased to be the "DSS" for years now, it is now the Department Of Works & Pensions, and the local council still handles the housing benefit at least until Universal Credit brings it under that payment and yes that will be a bit chaotic!

Does anyone think of the effect it will have on disabled people with this open discrimination? If you're in receipt of DLA or PIP and you claim Housing Benefit, many of whom cannot work, then you have landlords trying to prevent them having somewhere to live. To me this seems to be an issue of disability discrimination.

Obviously a lot of people who claim DLA/PIP will be great tenants, quiet, respectful, the rent always paid on time.

I got a place on DLA with a guarantor, and have not given problems.

Have Landlords not thought of the effect this has on disability?

At least in terms of the effect on disabled people, it should become illegal from that point of view in a compassionate society, and we shouldn't openly discriminate against whole groups of people on the basis of benefit claim alone.

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susan asche 8th February, 2020 @ 13:50

I to all landlords I am 52 years old I am not scum thing is with landlords they tie decent people with the same brush you do not know how that fills I am honest person open person I am very tidy clean person you might hear that all the time but looking after my nephews nieces my own 6 children keeping a nice and tidy house that I was living in but now getting divource had to leave my grown up children with him no landlord has any right to Call myself or any decent people scum some of us has had a good up bringing from our parents most landlords wants guarantors most people cannot get that all I am asking any landlord to give me a chance all I want is a 1bedroom flat or studio flat I am on benefit but that does not make me scum yet I know there are some people that take the Mick out of you landlords but people like me and others like me would like to have a chance surly you can tell the good ones from thebad onesI can please could you reconsider your view on property's and people so a least some landlord have some heart

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Carlos 3rd November, 2020 @ 20:11

I have paid since i came to uk , all my bills without delay, never asked for housing benefits in my life and I'm 40 years old, the covid started and the neighbour started with the LOUD BASS, i started to follow the long track of complaint and ended in the last step, COURT, and if i go to court, if you win, so they just tell the guy with the noise to stop it..... so i need to move now, and unfurtunetlly, and it is not my fault, COVID CAME, and im on Universal Credit, entitled to little more than 1000 pounds...... enough to play the life game till i find a job, I AM FROM VENEZUELA and i have no one in this land close to me, im alone in my flat, the police refuse to come to tell something to this abusive guy, and no one let me scape from this suicidal situation because ...... because...... covid came???? be human guys , im calling every day to find a place and all landlords and agencies play the game with me, the take your phone number, they tell you they will call you.. and then silence.....i know life is hard.... and some things are just as they are.. but you landlords, could grow be able to grow a karma of the size of the eiffel tower.
that is discriminative, not knowing someone doesnt make him guilty automatically, Humanly talking there should be a way to 1. punish the tenant that behaves like SH"""T and 2. to check and extend your hand to someone behave withing the universal coexisting rules.

















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