Housing advice


Leaving home aged under 18

Leaving home is a big decision; family might be difficult to live with, but the reality of living on your own could be even harder. You need to consider: 

  • paying your bills 
  • commuting to work, college, or other commitments 
  • whether you will be lonely 
  • the possibility of sharing with others to afford to live independently

For some young people, leaving home may seem like the only option but help is available to try and stop it reaching this point.

Joint assessment with social care 

Homeless young people under the age of 18 will initially be the responsibility of Social Services. However, if you are 16 or 17 it may be that you are better suited to the adult pathway into independent living.

To help you make the right choices and to ensure that you are safe and able to look after yourself, the Housing Options team will work with our colleagues in Social Care to conduct a joint assessment to assess your independent living skills and support you in making an informed choice.

You will be able to share your wishes and feelings and we will ensure you have an advocate to help you to understand the conversations and questions we ask.

Have a look at the guide to section 20 accommodation (PDF, 252KB) to help you understand the decisions and processes.

Contact Housing 

If you are under 18 and being asked to leave urgently, call us on 0300 123 5017 (option 1) and we will arrange for the joint assessment quickly.

If things are breaking down at home but it hasn’t reached the point where you have been asked to leave, then call our social care team on 0300 123 5012 (option 3 and then option 2) to discuss your options or how they might be able to help.

Page last reviewed: 20 May 2024