Housing Options for Ukrainian Refugees
The options for accommodation for Ukrainian refugees who are already in the UK are as follows:
- Find another sponsor (only available to those on Homes for Ukraine visas) – this is not an easy option due to the lack of available hosts. Also, if you have already had 6 months with one host, other hosts may wonder why you have not managed to secure a job and rented your own property in this time, and whether you are serious about this. See Finding a UK Sponsor for details of where you might look for a new sponsor. Note that councils should not stop a transfer to a suitable sponsor in another local council; this has been made clear by the Government. See Moving To Another Sponsor.
- Find council or social housing – this may be a viable option if your local council is fortunate enough to have sufficient housing available, and you have priority needs. It is usually cheaper rent than private landlords would charge, but there may be long waiting lists. See Council and Social Housing.
- Renting privately – this offers maximum choice in theory, but you do need to prepare for this in advance by ensuring you have a good job arranged first, and be aware that there is competition for rented properties also. See Renting Privately.
- Finding jobs with accommodation attached – this could be a good option for refugees without dependants such as children. A job in a hotel may offer the option of discounted accommodation and meals in the hotel for example. You can Google ‘live in hotel jobs’ for example, and look on job websites which advertise jobs in hotels and pubs, such as https://www.caterer.com/. The downsides of this are that it may not feel like home (you might not be able to cook for example), and if the job is lost, so is the accommodation. It’s best to view this as a temporary step towards renting privately. Many job websites are listed here: Finding Work.
If you think you will not be able to arrange accommodation in time, you will need to present yourself as ‘homeless’ to your local council. You can do this up to 56 days before you lose your home. See Housing Issues And Homelessness for more details.