You will need to have some information and evidence available when you make the claim. Make sure you know:
The total amount of rent you are paying and whether there is anything else included in the rental payments (e.g. utility charges for gas or electricity).
Whether you pay any service charges (including building maintenance or property insurance).
The full contact details of your landlord or letting agent.
Special Types of Tenancies
You may need to check whether you have an 'assured tenancy'. It may apply to a tenancy started in 1997 or earlier if you are renting from a private landlord. The charity website 'Shelter' has a tenancy rights checker for this purpose.
Housing Benefit also applies to some government properties (e.g. for people in the armed forces). In this case, you would need to know whether you have a Crown Tenancy.
Information and Evidence to Provide
The supporting evidence you provide for Housing Benefit must be the original documents. They will not accept any copies. Thus, make sure you can produce the originals of:
The most recent payslips (if you are in work). You will need five (5) if you get paid weekly, or two (2) if you get paid monthly.
Your bank or building society statements for the previous two (2) full months.
Proof of other income sources or investments, including ISAs, shares, or Premium Bonds.
Proof of income sources for any non-dependants that live with you. As a rule, this applies to any adult relatives or friends.