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When everyone has a home

028 9024 5640: Housing & Debt Helpline for Northern Ireland

"No DSS". Discriminating against private tenants in receipt of benefits

Despite DSS ceasing to exist in 2001, “No DSS” is a phrase sometimes still used by landlords and estate agents in Northern Ireland. Housing Rights continues to hear from clients who have been told that they cannot apply for rented homes because they need to claim benefits. Research carried out last year on over 9,000 private rental listings on website Open Rent found that 79% of landlords in Belfast preferred not to rent to people who were on benefits.

This resource will explain how equality legislation in Northern Ireland can be used to argue that a policy refusing access to tenant on benefits is discriminatory and unlawful and how discrimination in this context could be challenged.