Chelmsford City Council


If you are at risk of losing your home, you need to seek advice as soon as possible. We are often able to help people to stay in their homes.

You can:

If you are at risk of becoming homeless within the next 8 weeks, we will help you try to prevent it.

We will assess your situation and then work with you to draw up a Personal Housing Plan. Your Personal Housing Plan sets out reasonable steps you can take to stop you from becoming homeless. It also sets what we will do and what other agencies can do to help you. 

You can read the Shelter guide for more information on Personal Housing Plans

We can also give you advice if you:

  • have missed rent payments and are in rent arrears (debt)
  • are having problems with your tenancy
  • are about to be evicted
  • can’t afford your mortgage repayments
  • are living with family or friends and they have asked you to leave
  • are experiencing domestic abuse

If you are legally homeless, we have a duty to assess your situation and give you a Personal Housing Plan, which sets out reasonable steps to help you find somewhere to live.

However, we do not have a duty to provide emergency accommodation to everyone who becomes homeless. 

We will treat you as legally homeless if you:

  • have no legal right to live in accommodation anywhere in the world
  • can’t get into your home, for example your landlord has locked you out
  • can’t reasonably to stay in your home, for example you are at risk of violence or abuse
  • are forced to live apart from your family or people you normally live with because there is no suitable accommodation for you
  • are living in accommodation that is in a very poor condition, including overcrowding

If you live permanently in the UK, you will be eligible for help. If you are from abroad, your immigration status will affect your eligibility. Shelter’s guide on housing rights helps you work out if you’re eligible for assistance and what you’re entitled to. 

If you’re 16 or 17 and homeless, we will work with  Essex County Council Health and Social Care and make a joint assessment.

For emergency accommodation and support, you can visit:

You can download our Homeless Services Guide to view a map and contact details of other support agencies.

Make a referral


Public authorities or support services can make a referral for someone they think may be homeless or is threatened with homelessness within 56 days. 

To make a referral, you will need to:

  • have the consent of the person you are referring, including that you can give us their contact details so that we can contact them
  • let the person choose which housing authority they would like you to refer them to

You will also need:

  • your name and contact details
  • the name and contact details of the person you are referring
  • to give us information about their homelessness
  • to tell us if the person you are referring has support or health needs

You can refer someone to any housing authority. However, if you refer someone to us who does not have a local connection to Chelmsford, we will not be able to offer them all homeless prevention options. If the person you are referring has a connection to another area, that housing authority may have more options for helping them.

Once we have received your referral, we will contact the person you referred directly within ten working days. We will then begin an assessment of their circumstances. 

Making a referral does not guarantee that we will open a homeless application or that the person you referred will access housing. However, it does guarantee that we will give advice. This could include developing a Personal Housing Plan for the person you referred. The plan would outline the actions both we and the person you referred need to take to address their housing problem.

We can update you about your referral, if the person you referred gives us their permission. We will contact you once we have started our assessment.


Mandatory field

Is there something wrong with this page

Go to:

You are here »Home»Housing»Homelessness