Setting up Home | Nottinghamshire Help Yourself Skip to main content

Setting up Home

We know that finding accommodation is really difficult. Our aim is to support you to live independently in accommodation that meets your needs, is stable and affordable, and makes you feel safe. Where you live when you leave care will depend on your individual circumstances and needs.  There are many living options available to you and your personal adviser will agree with you which option is suited to you best.

We will encourage you to stay in care until you are 18.  If you decide to leave care before turning 18 years old, we must make sure that you have somewhere suitable to live.

You and your personal adviser will make sure that the support that you require when you leave care and the accommodation that you choose is included your Pathway Plan.

If you do not have a personal adviser and would like their help with your current accommodation circumstances please contact the Leaving Care Team 0115 804 1236 for Bassetlaw, Newark & Mansfield or 0115 854 6318 Ashfield, Broxtowe, Gedling and Rushcliffe.

Finding a home

We will help you find a home that is right for you.

Our commitment to you to help you find the right place, one that you can call home.  Some care leavers live in individual flats or houses, totally independently and don’t need much support from their personal adviser. Others may require more support to live independently.  The Leaving Care Service offers different levels of support depending on your individual need assessed by your personal adviser.

Your personal adviser or social worker will help you find out about all types of housing that provide support services and will show you the options that are available to you. 

Staying with your foster family

We can help you stay with your foster family if that's what you want.

If you would like to carry on living with your current foster carer(s) after your 18th birthday we will help you to do this under what is called a “Staying Put” arrangement.

You can do this until you are 21.  If you are at college, 6th form or on a training course such as an Apprenticeship you can “stay put” at your foster placement until the end of the summer term after your 18th birthday. 

Talk to your social worker, foster carer(s) and/or personal adviser if you would like to do either of these.  You can find out more about our “Staying Put Policy” here:

Choose where you live

We will give you choice in where you live.

We designed this offer to give your choice in where you live and to help you find the home you want and need.  If you are ready to move into your own flat and live independently, there are a number of options for you, including “private rented” accommodation, housing associations and “social housing” managed by your local district council (that’s us!). 

Most council houses have been transferred to housing associations and is now called social housing.  For example, Gedling Borough Council housing is now managed by Jigsaw Homes.  Private rented accommodation means renting your home from someone who owns a property.  They could be an individual who owns one place or a company who owns lots of properties, for example.

Most people start in private rented accommodation when they get their first home and these days it is getting harder to manage a tenancy with a private landlord.  We will help you with this by providing you with advice and guidance so you understand exactly what a tenancy is and your rights and responsibilities when renting a house in the private sector, so you get the best possible start in your new home.

We work with housing providers to help you prepare for getting your own place.  This includes offering you short courses on how to how to manage a tenancy.  You can learn about the different types of housing available, including how to buy your own home, household bills, how to pay them and how they affect your credit score.  Some of these are accredited and will help you when you apply for housing.  Talk to your personal adviser to find out more.

Council tax

You don’t have to pay council tax until you are 25.

To help you with your bills, we have introduced a Council Tax Reduction Scheme, which means that once you have applied for your Council Tax Discount you will not have to pay any Council Tax until you are 25 years old.  If you need any help to apply for this, please talk to your personal adviser. 

Priority on housing lists

Priority on Nottinghamshire local authority housing waiting lists.

We will give you priority on Nottinghamshire local authority housing waiting lists. 

We (Nottinghamshire’s 7 district councils – see below) have agreed that care leavers are a priority on our waiting lists for social housing.  When you apply for local authority housing in a planned way we will make you a high priority applicant so that you are offered a property quickly, ideally within 8 weeks.  It you come to us for re-housing in an emergency we would only take a homeless application from you as a last resort.

As a Nottinghamshire care leaver you will be able to move anywhere within the county – this covers Ashfield, Bassetlaw, Broxtowe, Gedling, Mansfield, Newark & Sherwood and Rushcliffe.  So give some thought to where you would like your first independent home to be.

For example, would it make sense to be close to college, work and/or friends?

Your own place

We will provide you with your own place if this is what you would like.

When you apply for housing with us you can choose whether you would like live on your own or to live in a shared house.  If you want to live on your own, we will give you your own place and provide the additional funding required to make this happen. This is called Discretionary Housing Benefit.

Mansfield- If you live in housing provided by Mansfield District Council, they will provide you with tenancy support.  You can register for this when you first take on your tenancy or ask for it at any time.  You can ask your personal adviser to help you do this

Deposits and guarantor

We will pay your deposit and act as a guarantor.

Many landlords require the payment of a deposit when you take up a tenancy.  They also often ask for someone to act as a guarantor.  We will do this for you where required.

Furnishing your home

We will help you move into and furnish you home so you can make it your own.

To help you live independently in accommodation that is stable and affordable, we will offer practical and financial support which you can find out more about in the Looking after your money section of this website.

Some social and supported housing providers offer their tenants support to help with the practical side of things, so talk to your personal adviser if this is something you are interested in.

Bills and rent

We will help you keep on top of your bills and rent.

We understand that looking after your own home and knowing what you have to do as part of your tenancy contract can be hard.  We want you to succeed and stay in your home. 

We will offer advice and support to help you do this by helping you to settle into your new home.  We can give you  advice about holding down a tenancy, paying your rent and bills, making sure you are applying for all the benefits you are entitled to and helping you learn to budget/manage your money.  We can arrange for your housing benefit and/or rent to be paid directly to your landlord, if this would help managing your money.

We understand that paying bills can take some time to get used to and things go wrong sometimes.  If this happens to you, please get in touch with our housing officers or your personal adviser as soon as possible so we can work together to put things right.

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