What is temporary accommodation

We have limited temporary accommodation in the borough of Redbridge. This means you might be placed in temporary housing outside of the borough if there is no local accommodation available.

You might be offered temporary accommodation (temporary housing) by Redbridge Council if:

  • you are eligible for our housing help 
  • we cannot prevent you and your household from becoming homeless
  • we have a duty to house you

You do not have more priority for council housing if you are in temporary accommodation rather than, for example, staying with family or friends.

Get help from us to prevent you becoming homeless

You can get advice and support from us if you are homeless or could become homeless. This includes if it is not safe for you to stay where you are.

Contact us as soon as you know that you might become homeless. You will get advice to try to prevent you from becoming homeless.

Our advice includes:

Emergency housing if we cannot prevent you becoming homeless

We will provide emergency housing while we look into your situation (known as your homelessness application) if we think you:

Emergency housing:

  • may be outside the borough of Redbridge if we have no local accommodation available when you need it
  • will likely be a room in a hostel

You will have to pay rent in emergency accommodation.

You will only be put in longer-term temporary accommodation if we have a housing duty towards you. 

What happens if we have a duty to give you temporary accommodation

You might be housed in one of the following if we have duty to give you longer-term temporary accommodation:

  • a room in a hostel or self-contained flat
  • private rented accommodation

You could be:

  • placed in temporary accommodation outside the borough of Redbridge if we have no local accommodation available
  • in temporary accommodation for many years

How we decide who can get temporary accommodation

You will be asked questions as part of a housing assessment if you are homeless or at risk of homelessness and ask us for housing help.

You cannot get temporary accommodation from Redbridge Council if:

  • our housing assessment shows that we have no housing duty to you
  • you do not have a priority need

Your housing assessment

You will be assessed for temporary accommodation based on what you tell us about:

  • you and your current circumstances
  • anyone who lives with you

You must sign up for a Personal Housing Plan as part of your housing assessment.

Your Personal Housing Plan includes what you should do to help you find permanent or long term housing and how we can support you.

Your Housing Solutions Officer will help you with a Personal Housing Plan.

Who has a priority need for temporary accommodation

You might get priority for temporary accommodation if we decide you need it because you:

  • are pregnant (or live with someone who is pregnant)
  • have dependent children
  • are 18 or under
  • are someone who has left care in the past six months
  • have served in the UK armed forces
  • have been in prison or custody

People who are vulnerable also have a priority need. This includes you or someone in your household who is:

  • 55 or older and needs support with living independently
  • struggling with their mental health
  • have a physical disability

If we offer you temporary accommodation

You will get support from us so that your temporary accommodation is as suitable as possible for your needs.

You will be eligible to join the housing waiting list if you are offered temporary accommodation.

You will get only one offer of temporary accommodation.

Refusing temporary accommodation

If you refuse our offer of temporary accommodation:

  • the Council may no longer have a duty to house you
  • you will be referred to Social Services if you have children

Paying for temporary accommodation

Temporary accommodation is not free. 

You must pay rent. You might also have to pay service charges (for example, for hot water).

We will tell you what the rent and service charges for your accommodation are when you move in.

We can help you apply for Housing Benefit to help with paying your rent if you are on a low income.