Ask Sam letter


To Sam

Moving out at 16

My mum doesnt want me to live with her anymore. my dad isnt able to accomodate me so i was wondering how i go about this. can i move out to my own place at 16? im in education i go to college but i also work on the weekends. But there is no way i would be able to afford rent. im stuck.

Ask Sam


Hi there

At 16 you can legally move out of home. Depending on your personal situation, you may be entitled to help with finding a new place to live as well as housing costs and benefits.

If you aren’t able to stay at home the first thing to do could be to contact Citizens Advice. You can talk to them about your situation, they can then tell you what benefits and support you’re entitled to. Talk to your college too, as they may have local knowledge of what’s available to you.

Charities such as Shelter may also be able to help find you a place to stay. You can also apply to your local council as homeless and if you need to leave home before 18, you could be entitled to some benefits from them to help with rent and living costs.

You must be over 18 to sign a rental agreement, but there are some situations where this can be held for you in trust until you reach 18. This can be through a landlord or another trusted adult and it’s likely you’ll need a guarantor, which is someone who agrees to pay the rent if you can’t.

Leaving home is a big decision and it can be a very difficult choice to make. There can be many reasons you may want to leave home and sometimes you might not have a choice. You can contact social services who are there to support families, whether that’s to stay together or help you get support to move out.

You are always welcome to talk to a Childline counsellor about your personal situation if you want to. You can also speak to other young people on the Childline message boards.

Take care


Need help straight away?

You can talk privately to a counsellor online or call 0800 1111 for free.

Ask me a question

You can ask me about anything you want, there's nothing too big or small. I read every single letter but I can only answer a few each week. My replies are published here on my page.

Write me a letter