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Temporary accommodation

After you make a homeless application to us, we may decide to place you in temporary accommodation - find out more about what to expect.

After making a homeless application to us, we may place you in temporary accommodation while we consider your application. Most temporary accommodation is from the private sector and outside the borough.

There is a shortage of temporary accommodation in the UK. It's difficult for us to find affordable, suitable temporary accommodation within Islington. We will still try to meet your needs as best we can.

Types of temporary accommodation

Emergency accommodation

This is usually a reception centre, or a hotel if there is nothing else available on the day you apply as homeless. We will try to move you onto new accommodation as soon as we can.

Emergency accommodation is fully furnished with bedding.

Hotel accommodation does not come with its own kitchen or cooking facilities.

Longer-stay temporary accommodation

This is self-contained, and you will have your own:

  • kitchen (no utensils)
  • bathroom
  • living and sleeping space (no bedding).

This type of temporary accommodation is fully furnished.

Cost of accommodation

You will have to pay for:

  • occupancy charges
  • bills
  • council tax.

Your housing benefit may not cover you rent because of the benefit cap. If you are struggling to pay your rent you must contact your Homeless Support Officer.

Find out more about your temporary accommodation costs.

Next steps

If you are single or a couple without children and the council decides it has a duty to house you, we will help you to find a settled home.

If you are a household with children and the council decides it has a duty to house you, we will try to offer you longer-term temporary accommodation. You may have to remain in this accommodation for a number of years.

Find out what you need to do when you're ready to move on from your temporary accommodation, 

Keeping in contact

While you are in temporary accommodation you will have a dedicated Homeless Support Officer to help with any issues to do with your property and your rent account.

Your officer will try to check in with you, but you must let us know about any changes in your situation or anything that may affect your housing application while you are in temporary accommodation.

If you are unable to contact your Homeless Support Officer, you can contact the Homeless Support helpline on 020 7527 6139 or email


Temporary accommodation is owned and managed by private landlords and agents for us. It is the managing agent’s responsibility to maintain and repair the property.

You should look after your accommodation, keep it clean and tidy and report any repairs to your managing agent.

  • On the day you move in, we will tell you who your managing agent is. If you need a repair, contact the managing agent.
  • We only contact your temporary accommodation officer if there is an serious ongoing problem with getting the repair completed to an acceptable standard.

More information

Use our set of frequently-asked questions for your situation.