If you're thinking about leaving home, consider your options and think about whether it's practical to leave.

Think about:

  • are you old enough to consider leaving home?
  • do you know how to find somewhere to live?
  • have you got enough money for a deposit and for the first month's rent?
  • what furniture will you need?
  • do you know if you're eligible for any benefits or support, or where to find help?
  • how much will you have to pay for food, Council Tax, electricity, gas and a TV licence?

There's a lot to think about, but there are support services that can help answer your questions.

To work out your best option, make sure you talk to:

Citizens Advice and Shelter offer free, independent youth advice and information on housing to help you understand your rights and options.

We offer support if you find yourself homeless and we also have a range of housing services.

Renting from a private landlord

Finding a home you can afford to rent doesn't mean finding a council or housing association property. There are many properties in Dorset that are available to rent from a private landlord.

A private landlord is someone who owns one or more properties that they rent out to tenants.

Why rent with a private landlord

There are advantages to renting privately:

  • there are no waiting lists so you'll be able to move in quickly
  • you can choose where you live and you can move to a different area if you want
  • there are different types of property you can rent, from one bedroom studio flats to houses big enough for large families
  • the properties are usually well decorated and carpeted; this is not always the case with social housing
  • the properties often come with a fridge, freezer and washing machine
  • if you're on a low income you may be entitled to Housing Benefit which will cover some or all of your rent

Where to find a property

You can find properties to rent by:

View the property

Once you find a suitable property you'll need to go and have a look at it.

It's a good idea to take a list of things to check so you don't forget about anything when you're there.

We can help you

Contact one of our housing advice teams if you need help renting a property.

Dorset Nightstop

Action for Children's Dorset Nightstop provides emergency accommodation for homeless young people aged between 16 and 25. Young people can stay in the home of a carefully recruited, fully checked and trained volunteer, supported by project staff. Accommodation is on a one-night-at-a-time basis, for a maximum of 3 nights.

If you find yourself homeless, Nightstop can offer a safe and friendly environment, giving agencies time to find a long-term solution for you.

Housing Advice - East Dorset

Email: housing@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk
Tel: 01202 228947
Full contact details

Housing Advice - North Dorset

Email: HousingAssessors@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk
Tel: 01305 251010
Full contact details

Housing Advice - Weymouth and Portland

Email: HousingAssessors@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk
Tel: 01305 251010
Full contact details

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