Rent Benefits

Rent benefits are only paid to people renting residential housing. ‘Residential housing’ refers to ordinary and satisfactory housing, with a minimum of at least one bedroom with a separate kitchen or cooking facilities and a separate toilet and bathing facilities, even if the flat itself is not officially approved as such. Rent benefits are not normally paid to those renting a single room, or when a kitchen or toilet is shared with other units. If a rented flat is situated on property zoned as commercial, such as shops or warehouses, the applicant does not qualify for rent benefits. Students and handicapped may be exempt.

Where do I apply for rent benefits?

You should apply at your local municipal service centre/þjónustumiðstöð, in the neighbourhood where your legal address is registered. Students from rural areas attending school in the capital area and individuals living in communal dwellings for the handicapped are exempt from this rule.

The lease and notarization:

You must first have a signed lease or rental contract that is valid for at least 6 months. Official contracts are available in Polish, English and Icelandic on this site.
You must notarise/þinglýsa the lease at the District Commissioner‘s/Sýslumaður located at Skógarhlíð 6, 105 Reykjavik. 

How to apply?

  • Fill out and sign an application form. Print one out here, or pick one up at your local municipal service centre.
  • Submit your completed application form, your original notarised lease, and confirmation of school enrolment if you are a student.
  • All persons 18 years* of age and older living in the flat must sign the application form.
  • Applications must be submitted by the 16th day of the first month for which benefits are to be paid; if the application is received later, then no rent benefits will be paid for that month.
  • Each application is valid for one calendar year; therefore applications must be renewed at the beginning of each year.

* The application forms for rent benefits are designed for one applicant only; rent benefits will therefore be paid to one only person living in the rented flat. Thus, the tenants must decide which of them the payments are to be made to.

How are rent benefits paid?

Payments are deposited into the applicant’s bank account. Applicants may also choose to have the payments made directly to the landlord.

How much will I receive?

Calculations are made according to income and amount of dependants legally domiciled in the apartment. Here is an electronic calculator that will give you a general idea of how much you may be eligible for.

All those who are renting a flat, have a signed, notarised lease for at least 6 months, and have a legal address in Reykjavik may apply for benefits. The flat or home being rented must be considered as residential.

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