The supported lodgings scheme offers young people aged 16 - 21 the opportunity to live in a supportive environment, but with more independence.
As a host, you provide a young person with a bedroom in your home and support to help them prepare for independent living.
Will I be responsible for the young person?
You won't be asked to take parental responsibility for the young person – they will be a lodger in your home. The aim of a host is to provide settled accommodation to those who have no settled home.
In supported lodgings, young people can learn to take responsibility for their own lives and find out how their actions affect not only themselves, but others they live with.
Help prepare someone for independence
We do ask you to provide guidance and advice to help the young person become an independent, confident adult.
This might include encouraging them to develop their personal and social skills, as well as helping them gain practical skills such as:
- accessing school, college and apprenticeships or work
- using a bank account
- household budgeting
- buying and preparing food
- completing simple DIY tasks
- using public transport
- organizing leisure time
- providing emotional support / a listening ear
- supporting to make appointments over the phone
In other words, everything that's involved in everyday living.
Who are the young people?
The young people are those who are leaving care or who can no longer live at home, and are not ready to cope with living on their own yet.
All of the young people have a social worker and/or personal adviser from our Leaving Care Team who looks at their background and helps to find the right placement for them.
We take care to match a young person with you. We'll take time to get to know you and the kind of lodgings you can provide, considering your needs and the needs of the young person.
You'll have the final say on who shares your home.
Can I offer supported lodgings?
We welcome applications from everyone, including those who are:
- married, with a partner or single
- working or not working
- with or without children
- homeowners or tenants
- from any ethnic background
The only restrictions are that:
- you must have a spare bedroom in your home
- you must be in good mental and physical health
- there must be nothing in your background that would suggest that any person placed in your care could be at risk of harm or abuse
Is my home suitable?
Your home can be large or small, old or new, rented or owned.
We do have expectations about what sort of home young people should have. For example, we expect a clean and safe bedroom for the young person to use.
You may need to confirm that you can provide accommodation to another person in the following scenarios:
If you are a council or registered housing association tenant
You can probably house a young person without any problem. If unsure, ask your housing provider.
If you are a private tenant
You’ll need to check the terms of your tenancy.
If you have a mortgage
You’ll need to check with your lender to see if you need their permission. Make it clear you will be living in the home whilst sharing it with a young person, rather than offering them a tenancy.
If you own your own home
If you are a freeholder, you can have who you like living with you.
If you own leasehold, check the terms of the lease in case you need permission.
If you are on benefits
You’ll need to discuss your potential involvement with this service with your benefits office.
Questions about finances
Do I get paid?
As a supported lodgings host you will receive payment of £255 per week per young person. This payment will be to cover the support you provide and rent for the room and their use of utilities.
On top of this, the young person receives a personal allowance of £61.05 per week. From this money the young person will pay you an additional £20 self-rent (to cover some meals, and items such as washing powder and toilet roll, for example).
Will I have to pay extra Council Tax for the young person?
People under 18 do not count as adults for Council Tax.
If you live alone and are claiming single person discount, this will not be affected as you will be reimbursed for any Council Tax charges made for the young person.
Will I have to pay income tax on the money I earn providing supported lodgings?
It depends on your total taxable income. Your payment should be added to your taxable income for the year.
You have to pay income tax if your total taxable income is greater than your tax allowances.
Tax allowances vary according to your circumstances. If you're unsure of what your tax allowance is, contact your local tax office.
Under the UK Government’s Rent a Room Scheme you can earn up to a threshold of £7,500 per year tax-free from letting out furnished accommodation in your home.
Will I have to increase my insurance?
You'll need to inform your insurance company in writing that you intend to provide supported lodgings to young people.
About the assessment process
A social worker will be allocated to you from the point of assessment who will support you all the way through.
We'll visit you often to complete the assessment and keep you updated. You'll be able to get to know the social worker and build a good working relationship.
The assessing social worker’s role
They are responsible for:
- finding out if you're suitable to provide supported lodgings
- discussing any concerns that may arise at any time during assessment, hoping to resolve them
- making the final decision to stop assessment, with their manager's approval
We're committed to making sure the assessment process and our decisions are fair, transparent and don't discriminate.
The initial home visit
A social worker will visit you, during the visit they will:
- give an introduction to supported lodgings
- tell you about what's involved and the process
- check the basic details we have about you are correct
Health and safety check on your home
This is a separate visit to the initial visit and will be completed during the assessment sessions.
We'll carry out a standard health and safety checks on your home and discuss safety in the home with you. We will want to see the room the young person will be living in at this time.
We'll ask you to sign a consent form so that we can ask for further information about your suitability to provide supported lodgings from other sources, such as the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and references.
If you decide to carry on with the process, or would like to talk about things, we'll visit you again.
We'll complete an in-depth assessment over about 12 weeks.
The assessment will start with these checks:
- medical checks to make sure you are medically capable of providing supported lodgings
- an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, which gives us information about people who cannot work with children and or vulnerable adults
- three references
What we will ask you about
We will ask a lot of questions about you during the assessment, such as:
- your background
- your family
- your education and career
- the area you live in
- your experiences caring for young people
- your understanding of young people’s accommodation and support needs
Having criminal convictions will not necessarily stop you from becoming a supported lodgings provider. What matters is the type of offence and whether it is relevant to the safeguarding children placed in your home - violent crimes or offences against children, for example, would be concerns.
All people over 18 living in your home and regular (for more than 20 nights a year) overnight visitors must have a DBS check too.
Wrexham local authority checks
We'll check social care records to see if you are known.
The information we gather about you will be held securely and remain confidential. It will only be looked at by people who need to look at it as part of the process.
While you are being assessed and if approved, you will be offered training by the local authority to prepare and support you within your role.
Once you are approved
Ongoing supervision and support
You will have regular supervision. We need to do this to record the young person's progress and highlight any further training you feel you need.
We can also talk about whether you feel that the needs of the young person have changed.
Emergency duty service
If a problem can't be resolved during the day, you can contact our social services emergency duty team during the following times:
- Monday to Thursday 5.30pm to 8:30 am
- Friday 4.30pm to Monday 8:30am
They also cover bank holidays, Christmas and New Year. Find the phone number for the team under our contact page.
If you’re interested in becoming a supported lodgings host you can fill in the online enquiry form. We’ll get in touch with you to discuss any initial questions you may have before the assessment process is started.
Supported lodgings enquiry form