Can Landlords Refuse DSS Tenants In the UK? — Answered

Landlord Protection Can Landlords Refuse DSS Tenants In the UK? — Answered

Can Landlords Refuse DSS Tenants In the UK? — Answered

One of the grounds that a landlord can deny you tenancy is the inability to pay your rent on time. A landlord has the authority to review your credit report and deduct whether they will grant you tenancy on their premises.

However, there are limitations on how much the landlord can filter prospective tenants by reviewing their financial abilities. A landlord should not deny a tenant housing benefit or universal credit on the basis of their credit report.

Tenant discrimination laws can get blurry, especially where several factors are in play. DoNotPay helps you  and other discriminatory factors and how to deal with such instances. 

What Is DSS?

DSS stands for the Department for Social Security but was renamed to Department of Work and Pensions (DWP). The department is an initiative by the government to provide social security benefits to the citizens of the UK.

A DWP/ DSS tenant is someone who receives housing benefits from DWP due to financial constraints caused by inevitable circumstances, such as:

CircumstancesAre you eligible?
Chronic illnessYes
Old ageYes
Single parenthoodYes

The government, through DWP, offers a monthly allowance that the beneficiary uses to cater to their needs, including rent.

Can Landlords Refuse DSS?

DSS beneficiaries are often viewed poorly, making tenants and other social service providers low-key discriminate against them. This bad rap is often reflected when landlords impose a no DSS policy.

It is common to see 'no DSS' or 'DSS  accepted' on rental property listings. However, this is an illegal practice. Landlords should not discriminate against DSS beneficiaries while picking their tenants, so long as the applicant matches all other eligibility criteria. 

A  no DSS policy is when a landlord or housing agent makes it clear that they do not accept a DSS beneficiary as a tenant through any of the following ways:

  1. Deny you the freedom to review their property put up for a tenancy  call
  2. Advertises their premises as working professionals only, no DSS, or no beneficiaries
  3. Outright rejects your application, setting benefits as the reason for the rejection

Landlords conduct checks to determine your eligibility as a tenant once you express your interest. The checks might include a background inspection of your occupation, credit report, and any other indicator of your financial strength.

The checks can also be used to discriminate against you once you identify as a DSS beneficiary. Landlords should not use external financial strength to verify companies that automatically reject DSS beneficiaries.

Why Did the Landlord Reject My Tenancy Application With DSS?

beneficiaries as tenants. However, the rejection can easily fit into indirect discrimination, especially when the landlord cannot prove any other reason for rejecting the application.

Here are some of the reasons landlords have started as to why they reject DSS beneficiaries as tenants:

  • Insurance companies take liberties and inflict a higher premium on tenants' property on housing benefits
  • There are lengthy procedures and delays in payment processing, which can lead to arrears build-up
  • The government housing allowance rates are set according to the lower end of the housing market, and the tenants might struggle with topping up the disparity between the relief and the actual rent amounts
  • Many mortgage lenders impose conditions on the landlord, forbidding them from accepting a housing relief beneficiary as a tenant
  • Government allowance and rent payment operate on different systems; allowances are disbursed four weekly and in small parts, while rent is paid in advance and in full amounts, causing a big rift in the systems

Sort Your Tenancy Issues With DNP

Financial hardships and unpredictable occurrences such as getting disabled might push you into seeking government assistance, including DSS housing benefits. Paying the rent with your DSS voucher might change your tenancy agreement dynamics if your landlord is not comfortable having a tenant on DSS on their property.

In such instances, you can opt to sue your landlord, which will be expensive and consume much time. Alternatively, you can relocate to DSS-friendly premises, leading you to break your lease.

How to Break a Lease Using DoNotPay:

If you want to break a lease but don't know where to start, DoNotPay has you covered in 4 easy steps:

  1. Search for and open the Landlord Protection product on DoNotPay.


  2. Select which issue applies to you.


  3. Answer a simple set of questions so our chatbot can collect the necessary information to create your demand letter.


  4. Choose whether you want DoNotPay to send the demand letter to your landlord or roommate on your behalf. If you already tried sending a demand letter and it didn't work, we can help you start the small claims court process.


And that's it! You should hear back from your landlord directly once your demands are sent.

Our landlord protection and tenants' rights product also allows you to access information on the following tenancy issues:

Why Use DoNotPay?

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