Homelessness

Advice on Leaving the Home of your Family or Friends

This page provides advice and tools for adults who are thinking of leaving, or have been asked to leave, their family home or the home of their extended family or friends. If you are under 18 years old, you need to contact Children’s Social Care by phoning 01702 215007. If you are 17 years old, or 16 years old and have finished Year 11 at school, please also see our advice for 16 and 17-year-olds threatened with homelessness.

Leaving home is a major decision and, unless your safety is at risk, it requires careful thought and planning. Being asked to leave housing provided by family members or friends is one of the biggest causes of homelessness and, in many cases; the Council will not have a duty to provide emergency housing. Therefore, you should ensure that you have somewhere else to go and have worked out how you will be able to pay for your housing, bills, food and other expenses before you leave home.

We strongly recommend you contact the Housing Solutions Team as soon as you are given notice to leave. This gives us a much better chance of preventing you from becoming homeless, either by talking with your family so that you do not have to leave, or by helping you find somewhere else to live.

If you are living with a family member or friends, it is likely that your living arrangement is what is known as a ‘bare license’. The courts presume that agreements between family members are not intended to be legally binding. However, we would expect the family member you are living with to give you reasonable notice if they are asking you to leave.

What will the council do if my family or friends are asking me to leave home?

The Council will provide all the help and support it can to help you all try to find a solution so you don’t have to leave home. This can include:

  • if you are being asked to leave due to a disagreement, we can mediate between you and your family. We can negotiate an agreement of how you and your family will conduct yourselves, so that they do not feel the need to ask you to leave
  • if your family feel unable to keep you in the home for financial reasons, we can explore your financial situation. We will establish if you are claiming any benefits to which you are entitled and can liaise with your family to agree a contribution towards household bills

If we are unable to negotiate that you can remain in your home, we will support you to look for alternative housing, which may include looking for a privately rented house share.

Feel unsafe at home?

If you feel unsafe in your home due to another person living there or someone who visits, please see our advice for people facing homelessness due to domestic abuse. In an emergency, you should dial 999.

Page last updated: 07/08/2019