Housing Assistance Payment Scheme (HAP)

About HAP

The Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) is a new social housing support, operated by Cork City Council, replacing rent supplement for those with a long term housing need in Cork City.  Short term rent supplement will continue to be managed by the Department of Employment Affairs & Social Protection. Anyone who has been approved for social housing support with Cork City Council may be eligible for HAP.  If you qualify for HAP you must find your own private rented accommodation.  The Local Authority will pay your landlord directly up to the applicable rent cap and you will pay a rent contribution to the local authority under the differential rents scheme, based on your weekly household income.

For more detailed information you can visit the HAP website at www.HAP.ie or follow the links below, for the answers to the following questions:

What is HAP? 
Why is HAP being introduced?
Who is eligible for HAP?
How does HAP work?




How do I get an application form for HAP?

If you are not yet on Cork City Councils housing list, you will need to apply for social housing support - please click here   for details on how to apply.

If you are already on the housing list, you can ask for a HAP application form, please contact the HAP team on (021) 492 4000 or email hap@corkcity.ie. The form only needs to be filled in when you have found suitable accommodation, or if you are already in private rented accommodation and eligible to transfer to HAP. Your landlord will need to complete and sign part of the HAP application form. If you are in any doubt about whether your tenancy arrangement qualifies for HAP, please check with a member of the HAP team.

How much is the HAP rent payment in Cork City?

Under HAP legislation, limits for HAP payments are based on the number of people in a household and the rental market in the locality. However, local authorities have limited additional flexibility to exceed rent limits on a case-by-case basis.

Please click here to view the current maximum HAP rent limits for Cork city.

Can I pay a top up?

Where the monthly rent agreed with your landlord exceeds the maximum rent limit payable by your local authority on your behalf, you must pay the difference directly to your landlord. Please note your means to pay the additional rent will be assessed.

How much rent will I pay to Cork City Council?

The rent paid by the tenant is based on their household income. It is calculated in the same way as the rent paid by a tenant of a local authority under the differential rents scheme. 

How long does the lease have to be?

A two year tenancy is preferable. Your tenancy will be covered under the terms of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (as amended). This means that the tenancy agreement is, or will be, between you and your landlord (Cork City Council is not party to the tenancy). You can find further information about your rights and responsibilities as a tenant on the RTB website www.rtb.ie

Can I move?

If a tenant wishes to end a residential tenancy where there is a valid lease, this will only be facilitated/approved in exceptional circumstances. A written request outlining the reason for the need to move is required. This should be submitted to the HAP section prior to moving.

What happens to my housing application?

When you sign up to HAP, you are provided with an opportunity to remain on the waiting list as a transfer applicant retaining your credit time and access to CBL. 

Can I transfer to another housing support?

Yes. Any HAP recipient who wants to access other social housing supports can do so through the HAP transfer system operated by local authorities. Once in receipt of HAP, you can apply to transfer from HAP to other forms of social housing support such as local authority housing. As a HAP recipient, your likelihood of getting a different form of Social Housing Support is not affected by accepting HAP.

Can I apply for HAP in an area outside of Cork City?

Where eligible applicants for HAP have found suitable accommodation in another local authority area, an application can be considered under the Inter-Authority movement initiative.  Applications are subject to certain qualification criteria.  For further information please contact the Cork City Council HAP team.    


HAP for Homeless Services

Cork City Council offer a Place Finder service to exclusively focus on transitioning families directly from homeless services into the private rented sector under the Housing Assistance Payment Scheme (HAP). The Place finder service is part of the Homeless Unit in Cork City Council as it is specifically for housing applicants who are currently in emergency homeless services. 

For further information in relation to Place Finder support please call (021) 492 4000 or email placefinder@corkcity.ie. 

HAP Information and Advisory Service

In light of the recent announcement from The Department of Housing, Local Government, and Heritage to lift the eviction ban from 31/03/2023, the HAP department is aware that there are now termination notices being issued to tenants.  Please see www.gov.ie for more information.

If you are a HAP tenant who has received a notice of termination from your landlord, please see below:-

To get the notice validated by Threshold, and to get general tenancy advice, you can contact them on 021-4278847 or via email on advicecork@threshold.ie Please note that the HAP section cannot validate a notice of termination. 

If you need emergency accommodation, contact Accommodation Placement Service on 021-4924248 or via email on homeless@corkcity.ie

If you are looking for a new property to avail of HAP, please email hap@corkcity.ie with your PPS number and we will send you a new HAP pack.

Please also be aware that your Social Housing file should be up to date at all times. If you have had any change of circumstance since your original application, please notify housing@corkcity.ie or call to the public counter between 10AM and 4PM from Monday to Friday.


Contact Information

Please be advised that only fully completed application forms can be accepted.

Address: Housing Assistance Payment, Housing Directorate, City Hall, Anglesea Street, Cork, T12 T997.

The quickest and most effective way to have your query addressed is by phone or email, see below:

Phone: (021) 492 4000

Email: hap@corkcity.ie 

HAP operates on an appointment only basis. If your HAP query cannot be dealt with via email or telephone, please contact the team to arrange an appointment.