Housing advice for people being asked to leave accommodation provided by family or friends

Part of: Help if you're at risk of becoming homeless

Specific advice for 16/17 year olds

If you are aged 16 or 17 years and being asked to leave the home of family or friends and have nowhere to stay, you should contact Children’s Services at the earliest opportunity.

Help from Haringey Council

Living in a multi-generational home or staying temporarily with friends can be extremely difficult but it is always better to plan a move. The only exception to this is if the arrangement is unsafe due to a risk of violence.

If you are being asked to leave your current accommodation, we would advise you to seek early assistance. Frontline staff at Haringey Council will work with you and the person asking you to leave by providing practical ideas to help you all try and work out a solution, so you don’t have to leave home immediately. Generally, for people leaving home, it is a major decision and requires careful thought and planning.

If you apply for housing assistance because you are homeless in these circumstances, we may not necessarily be legally obliged to provide you with any accommodation.

However, we will have a duty to assess the circumstances of your homelessness, identify what your housing and support needs are, and to work with you to try to prevent your homelessness or support you to find you somewhere to live. We will provide you with a ‘personal housing plan’ which will tell you what we can do to help you and what you can do to help yourself. This might include actions such as attending appointments with our employment and skills team or engaging with our Homefinder team.

For Haringey Council to be legally obliged to provide you with accommodation, we would need to be satisfied that you are eligible, homeless, in priority need and that you have not made yourself intentionally homeless.

It is important to be aware that even if we can assist you, it is likely that we would place you into accommodation in the private sector.

Leaving home as a young person

When to leave home is a major decision which should not be taken lightly. Although leaving home will grant you more freedom, it also means you will have responsibilities that you have probably not had to deal with before. The best way to leave home is after careful thought and planning. Leaving your parental home at a very young age, especially if you have nowhere to go, should be the very last option that you should consider. You could easily end up homeless.

From 1 April 2017, some 18 to 21 year olds claiming Universal Credit are not entitled to help with housing costs in Universal Credit full service areas. The GOV.UK website provides more information about which 18-21 year olds can still get help with their housing costs.

Explore your options first

When you are ready to leave, you will need to decide the type of housing that will suit you best. A major factor in making this decision will probably be your financial situation. The cost of running a home is rising all the time. Many people decide to share with others at first as this will mean you can share the rent and bills. Seek advice before you decide and do not rush into anything.

If you are having problems at home

There is help and support available. Try to find someone you trust to talk to, such as friends, extended family such as an aunt or uncle, or a teacher at your school or college. If the situation becomes worse, see if there is a place you can go to for a night or two to let everyone cool down. We may be able to provide mediation in your home with your family to talk about the problems.

Remember, no matter how bad things may seem, if you leave home without preparation, you may find yourself in an even worse situation.

Feeling unsafe at home?

If you have absolutely no choice and feel that you have to leave home immediately, for example because someone is being violent or abusive towards you, you must seek help right away.

There are a number of agencies who can assist you, including perhaps finding you a safe place to go, including:

  • Childline: 0800 1111 free 24 hour support helpline for children and young people
  • Women’s Aid: 0808 2000 247 free 24-hour helpline for victims of domestic violence
  • Shelterline: 0808 800 4444 free 24 hour helpline giving information on housing