Housing advice for people experiencing domestic abuse

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

What is domestic abuse?

Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.

This can include, but is not limited to:

  • psychological abuse: such as preventing contact with family/friends, threats
  • physical abuse: such as kicking, punching, biting, slapping, restraining, throwing things, burning
  • sexual abuse: such as rape, being forced to participate in sexual acts, being forced to watch pornography
  • financial abuse: such as depriving of money, selling possessions, controlling expenditure, loaning money
  • emotional abuse: such as giving you the silent treatment, name calling/insults, mood swings, criticism, playing on your fears

If you’re worried about violence or abuse from your partner, ex-partner or a member of your family, you can get help and advice. If you’re in immediate danger, you should always phone the police on 999. You can also contact Haringey Police on their non-emergency number: 101.

Get help now


You can contact Hearthstone. The service is available to women and men over 16 years of age. Hearthstone provides emotional and practical support for anyone experiencing domestic abuse in Haringey and they work with all levels of risk. The support package they offer includes:

  • housing advice including access to refuge accommodation
  • free legal advice on a range of civil remedies such as injunctions
  • access to solicitors who provide free legal advice around family matters
  • a sanctuary scheme to make your home more secure
  • working with you to plan ways to increase your safety
  • access to counselling

You can refer yourself to Hearthstone by either calling the number below or emailing them.

  • Opening hours are:
    • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 9am to 5pm
    • Wednesday: 12.45 to 5pm
  • Please call 020 8489 3411 during opening hours to speak to our team.
  • Email: hearthstone.domesticviolence@haringey.gov.uk

Domestic violence helplines

You can contact the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 if you are a woman experiencing domestic abuse. You can talk confidentially to someone about your situation and to find out what your options are.

If you are a man experiencing domestic abuse you can contact the Men's Advice Line on 0808 801 0327.

If you are in a same-sex relationship you can call the National LGBT Domestic Violence Helpline on 0800 999 5428.

Solace women’s aid

Solace run a range of services in Haringey, including a phone line for immediate advice for women affected by Domestic Violence and Abuse to access counselling and floating support.

  • Contact: 080 8802 5565 (Freephone). Hours: Monday-Friday 10am-4pm and Tuesday Evenings 6pm-8pm
  • Email: advice@solacewomensaid.org

Solace also run the North London Rape Crisis Service, which is for women and girls over the age of 14 who have experienced any form of sexual violence at any time in their lives.

  • Contact: 0808 801 0305. Hours: Monday 10am-2pm, Tuesday 10am-1pm and 6-8pm, Wednesday and Thursday 1-5pm, Friday 10-2pm
  • Email: rapecrisis@solacewomensaid.org


Nia is an independent domestic violence advocacy service that offers advice and support for women

  • Contact: 0300 012 0213 (Monday to Friday 10am - 5.30pm)


Call the Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90 if you feel in despair and want someone to listen to you and provide emotional support.

Leaving your home

Not everyone leaving home due to violence is entitled to emergency accommodation.

If you are a Haringey Council tenant you can contact your Tenancy Management Officer to discuss the matter in confidence.

If you are in temporary accommodation provided and managed by Haringey Council, you should contact your tenancy support manager. Please call 020 8489 1000 to be put through to them.

If you are a housing association tenant please contact your Housing Manager at your housing association.

If you do need to leave, it might be that you could stay with friends’ or relatives while you think about what to do next. If you are a woman leaving domestic abuse, you can try and find a place in a women's refuge. Hearthstone may be able to help you with this. Take some essentials with you such as a change of clothes, toiletries and any medication you need to take regularly. Try to bring important items such as your passport, bank and credit cards and mobile phone.

Do not make a decision to give up your home permanently until you have spoken to an adviser and considered all your options.

Use Shelter's directory to find a Shelter advice centre or Citizens Advice in your area.

Remaining in your home

If you do not want to leave your home, there are options available to minimise the risk to you. These include applying for Non-Molestation and Occupation Orders and the Sanctuary Scheme. The Sanctuary Scheme reduces risks by carrying out safety works in your home such as fitting a sanctuary door, changing locks, securing windows and installing fireproof letter boxes.

You can access this service by contacting Hearthstone on 020 8888 5362.

Get homelessness help from the council

You can apply to us as a homeless person if you can't stay in your home. 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 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 Hearthstone or engaging with organisations that can assist people experiencing domestic abuse.

Some people are entitled to emergency accommodation in order to assess whether there is a duty to find them somewhere to live and you will be asked to provide details of your situation. You may be asked for supporting evidence, which could include details and dates of incidents. In most cases we will initially offer you refuge accommodation as this provides you with a place of safety, security and support.

Help from social services

Some people experiencing domestic abuse may be entitled to help from the council's social services department. Social services might be able to help if you:

  • are elderly
  • have children living with you
  • are under the age of 18
  • have left care (or are about to do so)
  • are in poor health
  • have a physical or learning disability

Social services may be able to help by finding accommodation for you, paying for a deposit or providing financial support.

Refuges for women

Women experiencing domestic abuse may be offered accommodation in a women's refuge. Some refuges are specifically for women from certain backgrounds, such as Irish or Asian women. Staff at refuges can give you advice about your situation and discuss your options for move-on.

Contact the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 for more information about refuges.

Read the housing options factsheet

Read the women's refuges fact sheet

Refuges for men

If you are a man experiencing domestic abuse, you can contact the Men's Advice Line on 0808 801 0327. If you are in a same-sex relationship you can call the National LGBT Domestic Violence Helpline on 0800 999 5428.

Read the housing options factsheet

Help for children and young people

If you or someone else in your family is being hurt at home, you may not be sure what you can do about it. Domestic abuse is not your fault and you won't get into trouble for telling someone about it. The first thing is to tell someone else about what is happening to you. You can tell a teacher, a neighbour, a friend or a friend's parent.

You can call Childline on 0800 1111 for free. They won't tell anyone else you are calling unless you are in immediate danger. They can tell you about places where you can get help. Find out more from The Hideout about children and young people and domestic abuse and violence.