Housing advice for people leaving prison

Areas you can be housed if you are homeless

When you apply to Ealing Council’s housing solutions team for assistance, the team will check to see if you have a local connection with Ealing.

You can establish a local connection, for example, by living, working, or having immediate family (usually a parent or brother or sister) in the area.

Time spent in prison in a specific area does not give you a local connection with the area where the prison is located. However, if you have no local connection with any area or if you are fleeing domestic violence, you can apply to any council in any area. The council you apply to has to help you.

If you do not have a local connection with Ealing, we will still try to prevent you from becoming homeless. However, if you are actually homeless we will refer your case to a council where you do have a local connection.

As an ex-offender there may be restrictions placed on where you can live. For example, if an anti-social behaviour order (ASBO) says you can't go to a particular area, you may need to seek help from a different council.

High risk prisoners managed by a multi-agency public protection arrangement (MAPPA) may be required to live in certain areas. If this applies to you, any housing that you find, or Ealing Council assists you to find will need to be approved by the police.


You may need to use emergency accommodation such as a hostel, night shelter or bed and breakfast accommodation if you have nowhere to go following your release. Hostels provide temporary accommodation. Some are direct access, which means you do not need a referral from an agency to use them.

In Ealing there are day centres that provide cheap hot meals, showers, laundry facilities and other practical help for people who need somewhere to go during the day. They may also be able to help you find housing.  

You can search the Homeless England directory to find hostels, emergency and longer-term accommodation and day centres in your area.

You can also use Shelter's directory or call Shelter's free housing advice helpline on 0808 800 4444 find services near you.