Due to the request for refraining from going out due to the novel coronavirus, income may decrease, and many people may find it difficult to pay monthly rent.
In such cases, we can use a system whose name is “housing security benefit.”
This article will explain the detail of the system and how to apply it. Of course, foreigners can apply it, so don’t worry.
- What is the Housing Security Benefit?
- Target of the Housing Security Benefit
- Benefit Amount
- How to Apply for the Housing Security Benefit
- What to do while Receiving the Benefit
What is the Housing Security Benefit?
The housing security benefit is a system that pays money for rent to those who have lost their housing (or may do it) when they leave or close their job due to unavoidable circumstances.
Although there are requirements and upper limits, we can receive money for rent, which has a high weight in living expenses.
The purpose of the benefit is to make recipients’ rebuild their lives through re-employment, while they receive the money. The benefit period is 3 months in general.
This time, some requirements have been eased to support people who have become economically distressed by the novel coronavirus. And the target has expanded to people other than those who have left or closed their jobs.
Target of the Housing Security Benefit
The housing security benefit is primarily for people who meet the following requirements:
- You are within 2 years from the date of leaving or closing a business, or opportunities to earn income have decreased due to unavoidable business suspension.
- Assets are within a certain amount and have not received income exceeding the income standard amount.
- Before the above situation, you mainly maintained your household livelihood
- You are using Hello Work to search jobs
Those who meet all of the above are likely to be eligible for the housing security benefit.
The part that “or opportunities to earn income have decreased due to unavoidable business suspension” was added by the effect of the novel coronavirus.
About the Requirement of “Assets are Within a Certain Amount”
If you have sufficient financial assets, you will not be eligible for the benefit. For example, in the case of Yokohama City in Kanagawa Prefecture, the asset amount for a single person must be 504,000 yen or less to receive the benefit.
|Number of household members
|Upper limit of asset amount
|More than 3 people
The upper limit of the asset amount varies depending on the area, so please check how much it is in your area.
About the Requirement of “Have Not Received Income Exceeding the Income Standard Amount”
If your household income exceeds the standard amount, you will not be eligible for the benefit. For example in Yokohama city, the standard amount is “applicant’s housing cost + 84,000 yen” for a single person, and the upper limit is 136,000 yen.
|Number of household members
|Income standard amount
|Applicant’s housing costs＋84,000 yen
|Applicant’s housing costs＋130,000 yen
|Applicant’s housing costs＋172,000 yen
|Applicant’s housing costs＋214,000 yen
Those who have significantly reduced their income due to the effect of the novel coronavirus may meet the requirements, so we recommend you to check once.
The amount of the housing security benefit depends on the place where you live, the number of households, and your monthly income.
For example, in Yokohama City, the maximum benefit rent amount for a single person is 52,000 yen. If the monthly income exceeds the standard amount, the exceeded amount will be deducted from the benefit rent amount.
|Number of household members
|Maximum benefit rent amount
Reference：住居確保給付金 横浜市 (Japanese)
The payment period is 3 months in principle, but if the situation does not improve even if you are doing job-hunting properly, you may be able to extend it to a maximum of 9 months.
For your information, since the benefit amount is paid directly to the lender’s account, it cannot be used for purposes other than a rent payment.
How to Apply for the Housing Security Benefit
You can consult and apply for the housing security benefit at the self-reliance support center in your town.
You can check the contact point of each center from the list below. If you cannot find the window here, please contact each prefecture or municipality.
Below is an example of what you need when applying.
- Identification documents (such as residence cards)
- Certificate of unemployment or Notification of discontinuance of business, or documents that indicate that you are in a situation similar to leaving a job or closing a business
- Documents to confirm your income, such as a payslip (including family members’ if they also have income)
- Copy of all passbooks (including family members’ if they also have income)
- A copy of Hello Work Card (a registration card for Hello Work)
- Seal (using red ink pad)
In addition to the above, some areas require a lease agreement. Required documents and application methods may vary by region, so be sure to check by phone first.
In some areas, applications are accepted by mail to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.
What to do while Receiving the Benefit
While receiving the housing security benefit, you are required to carry out job hunting, etc. with the support of a self-reliance support center.
The main things to do are:
- Get employment counseling at Hello Work (twice a month)
- Interview with a self-reliance support center (4 times a month)
- Apply for a job or have a job interview (at least once a week)
- Notify if you get a regular employment
If you have not left your job or closed your business, you may not be required some of the above.
And, due to the influence of the novel coronavirus, some areas accept your report of job hunting activities by telephone so that you don’t need to visit the center.
For what you have to do while receiving the benefit, please check the detail with the self-reliance support center.
People with household income and assets below a certain level may be eligible for the housing security benefit.
Previously it was only for people who left or closed their jobs. However, due to the influence of the novel coronavirus, those who were economically distressed by the decrease of opportunity to earn income, which is not attributable to themselves, have become the target as well.
You will be able to rebuild your life while having the support for paying your rent, so if you are in trouble, please check if you meet the requirements or not.