We want to make homelessness advice as easy to access as possible. We’ve put together some useful information below which may be helpful if you have questions about your housing situation or how to find a home.
- What support services are available to me?
- What alternative accommodation is available in the city?
- Help to find a private rented property
- Can I get help if I want to own my own home?
What support services are available to me?
Coventry City Council works with P3 to provide housing related advice and support to single people over 25 and families. You can find out more about the services P3 provide on their website.
View our Homelessness Directory to find other support services available to you.
What alternative accommodation is available in the city?
If you have support needs which mean that you require additional support to be able to live independently, there are a range of options available depending on your circumstances.
Supported accommodation for young people aged 16-24. It provides support for those willing to engage with education, employment, and training opportunities whilst living at the scheme. If you think this is an option you may benefit from, speak to your housing officer about a referral. Visit the Coventry Foyer website for more information, alternatively you can call 024 7625 1001.
Harnall Lifehouse provides accommodation and support for single people over 25 years old. Harnall Lifehouse accepts self-referrals alongside referrals from agencies such as Coventry City Council.
Visit the Harnell Lifehouse website for more information, alternatively you can call 024 701 1770.
Residential support service for people over the age of 16 who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Their accommodation is spread across the city. Coventry Cyrenians accept self-referrals alongside referrals from agencies such as Coventry City Council. Visit Coventry Cyrenians website for more information, alternatively you can call 024 7622 8099.
Accommodation and support for vulnerable individuals and families, including young families and households fleeing domestic violence. Valley House accept self-referrals alongside referrals from agencies such as Coventry City Council. Visit Valley House website for more information, alternatively you can call 024 7626 6280.
Help to find a private rented property
A private rented sector property is a residential property such as a house, flat, or bungalow, which is owned by an individual landlord or a company, who rent their properties to the public.
In many cases it is easier, quicker, and more convenient to secure a property in the private rented sector than it is to get a social housing property. This is especially true for larger families, where there is a large shortage of suitable social housing properties.
As there are far more private rented houses on the market, there are far more opportunities for flexibility, and to choose the right property which suits your needs. This is particularly true if you want to live in certain areas of the city, as the private rented sector gives far greater flexibility to choose where to live than the social housing property market does. This is also true if you only want to consider living in a house rather than a flat, as only 25% of properties let by Housing Associations in Coventry last year were houses.
What you need to rent privately
There are several documents that a landlord or letting agency will often ask for to ensure that you are reliable, that you can afford your rent, and to prove your identity. They may ask for documents such as:
- Proof of benefit
- Proof of current address (if you have one)
- Your employment contract or accounts information if you are self-employed
- Recent bank statements or pay slips
- Immigration documents which prove your right to live in the UK
Finding a private rented property
There are many factors to think about when searching for a new place to live. Some of the most common factors are:
- Transport links to jobs and schools
- Whether you need specialist accommodation (e.g. specific disabled access)
The easiest and fastest way to find a property is online, where you can search by the criteria you want (area, cost, etc) and arrange viewings. Private rented properties are often advertised on the following websites:
There are also many local lettings agencies in Coventry. You can find these by typing ‘Coventry lettings agencies’ into Google. Here you will be able to view properties from these agencies, and information including phone numbers and contact addresses, which can be used for further help to find a property. If you do not have easy access to the internet, you can find lettings agencies scattered across the city centre, and in some of the areas you may want to live.
If you are in receipt of housing benefit, you should not allow this to put you off trying to find a property in the private rented sector. Whilst there is a widely held belief that landlords will not let properties to people on benefits, this is not true and many people on benefits do successfully find adequate and affordable accommodation in the private rented sector.
Can I get help if I want to own my own home?
If you have any savings or assets, it is always worth exploring options available to you through affordable home ownership. There are several alternatives to a traditional mortgage for those looking to own their own homes, many of which are much easier to access due to requiring lower up-front deposits.
Shared Ownership is a scheme where you buy a proportion of the value of a property and pay rent on the rest. For example, you could buy 25% of a property and pay rent on the remaining 75%. This would mean that you would only have to pay a deposit on the proportion you buy, the 25%, which would mean your deposit would be a lot less than a traditional mortgage. Shared Ownership properties typically require a deposit of 5-10% minimum, on the proportion of the property’s value that you are buying.
So, for example, if a property costs £150,000, and you are looking to put a 5% deposit down on 25% of the value, you will only need to put down £1875 as a deposit.
If you own a Shared Ownership property you are also able to gradually buy greater amounts of your property if you wish to do so. This used to be in 10% instalments, however this year the government announced plans to change this to 1% instalments. So if you initially buy for example 25%, 50%, or 75%, you can eventually own 100% of the property by buying it back in instalments.
You can buy a property through Shared Ownership if:
- You are a first-time buyer, you used to own a home but now can’t afford to buy one, or you already own a shared ownership property but are looking to move
- You live in a household with an income lower than £80,000
- If you are interested in purchasing a Shared Ownership property, read more information and advertisements.
Help to Buy
Help to Buy is a scheme where the government lends you up to 20% of the cost of your newly built home, so you’ll only need a 5% cash deposit and a 75% mortgage to make up the rest.
You will have to be a first-time buyer to be eligible for Help to Buy, and in Coventry you will be eligible for Help to Buy on newly built properties up to the value of £250,000. This includes both flats and houses.
You can also open a Lifetime ISA, a bank account which replaces the old Help To Buy ISA’s and is there to help with this cost. They are bank accounts where the government will boost your savings by 25%. So, for example, if you were able to save £200 a month, the government would give you another £50 on top of that.
Discount Market Sale
Discount Market Sale is a scheme led by Housing Associations where they sell properties at 20-50% below market value. The scheme is generally closer to 20% and is designed for lower income households to get a foot onto the property ladder via a traditional mortgage at a reduced cost.
As Discount Market Sale is solely managed by Housing Associations, you will need to contact them directly if you are interested in it.
Homelessness Advice Service
If you are homeless and have nowhere safe to stay tonight, you can contact our emergency assessment team on 024 7683 4025. Our phone lines can be very busy, you will need to hold to speak to an advisor. Unfortunately, we are unable to deal with general enquiries via our phone line. If you have a general enquiry, please email us. For out of hours emergencies, please call 024 7683 2222.