What is Homelessness?

What is Homelessness?

In Scotland you don’t have to be roofless or sleeping rough to be homeless.  Homelessness can include temporarily staying with friends or family, staying in a hostel or B&B, living in overcrowded conditions, being at risk of violence in your home including from domestic violence or threats and harassment from others, living in unsuitable conditions that affect your health, living in a house that is not suitable for you due to long term illness or disability, or living in a home that is not wind or watertight.

You can also be classed as homeless if you will not have a settled place to live in the next two months.

If you think that you might be homeless or at risk of becoming homeless contact your local authority for help and assistance.
For further independent advice you can contact Shelter Scotland

What Is Homelessness

Some groups of people are at higher risk of becoming homeless than others. This can be because they are vulnerable due to poverty, disability, age, illness or being affected by traumatic experiences. Others might be more at risk of becoming homeless because they have fewer rights, such as no right to benefits or no right to work. Some groups of people might be more at risk because they have been in the armed forces, prison or care.

The causes of homelessness are rarely simple. People can become homeless for many reasons. These could include being evicted by your landlord, losing your job, health problems, money problems, relationship problems, a breakdown in your relationship with parents or carers, harassment by your neighbours, or domestic violence. Sometimes people can cope with one or two short term problems but their resilience is weakened if those problems persist or if any additional problems occur.

In many cases homelessness can be prevented. Advice and assistance, including income maximisation, mental health support, counselling, practical support with learning self-care skills, as well as legal advice and financial advice, can contribute to keeping someone in their home.

For more information on where to seek advice if you are made homeless or you are at risk of homelessness visit the mygov.scot website.

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