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Get help finding somewhere to live or support to stay in your home.
We are proposing some changes to the Housing Allocation Scheme

Let us know what you think of the proposed changes to the housing allocation scheme by 14 February 2021

Lewisham is in National lockdown: Stay at home restrictions

Find out about the COVID-19 restrictions.

Get housing advice

Answer a few short questions to get advice about your housing situation.

How we can help

Contact us if you are homeless, or likely to be homeless within the next eight weeks. We will:

  • assess your housing situation
  • work out what your needs are
  • give you advice on the next steps to take.

We will help you develop a personalised housing and wellbeing plan, which sets out what actions we will both take to prevent or relieve your homelessness.

Accessing our service online

Lewisham are moving towards an online referral system for helping those who are homeless or soon to be homeless – the Lewisham Homelessness Portal. We hope this will make contacting us easier if you are homeless or believe you will be made homeless in the near future.

To trial this new system, from 1st February 2021 we will only be dealing with emergency cases through our call centre. This means, unless you are homeless on the day you contact us on the telephone, you will need to visit the portal and register your details for a call back.

If you have received written or verbal notice from your landlord/ friend/ family member and it does not expire on the day you call us, you will be directed to complete a self referral form on the portal. We will contact you within 5 working days of receiving your portal application to discuss your housing issues.  

If you have a general housing enquiry, you can email housingoptionsenquiry@lewisham.gov.uk (families) or ship@lewisham.gov.uk (single clients).

Step-by-step guide

Read Shelter’s step-by-step guide about how to get support from the Council if you are homeless or facing homelessness within eight weeks. The guide tells you about:

  1. how we can help
  2. how to ask us for help
  3. homeless assessments
  4. personal housing plans
  5. who qualifies for housing
  6. challenging a decision.

Financial support

If you are having financial problems, we may be able to help you:

  • budget, manage your money and maximise your income
  • with benefit changes, such as universal credit, benefit caps or local housing allowance
  • find a job
  • with a deposit for private rented accommodation.

Financial help will be available as part of your personalised housing and wellbeing plan.

Borrow an address to access services

We are testing a system called ProxyAddress. This gives you a stable address that you can use to access services. For example, you could use it to open a bank account.

ProxyAddress is free. It is available from October 2020 to March 2021.

Let us know if you would like to take part in this trial and we will help you join. Our contact details are at the bottom of this page.

Find out more about ProxyAddress.

Emergency accommodation

Emergency accommodation is in the form of hostels. You can access some of hostels directly without needing a referral.

Partners and duty to refer

Some public organisations (such jobcentres, A&E and probation services) must refer homeless people, or people at risk of homelessness, to us. This is called duty to refer.

Refer someone to us. 

Related pages


Useful websites

How to contact us

Single people

If you are a single person in need of housing advice, contact SHIP (Single Homelessness Intervention and Prevention).


If you are a family in need of housing advice, or you are pregnant, contact Housing Options.