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Luton Borough Council

What can I spend my personal budget on?


​If you have decided to manage your own personal budget and receive direct payments (or have someone acting on your behalf manage it for you), then you can start to think about how you would like to spend it.

You can spend your personal budget on any support or service that we agree will achieve your goals – which were identified from your assessment of care needs.

You are free to choose what form that support is in, who it is provided by, and when and where you receive it.
The support you choose must be lawful, effective, and within your personal budget.

Your support: your choice

The care you choose is as individual as you are, so think about what you need and what you enjoy doing.

Here are some examples:

Jasmine thinks: "I wish I could have the same home care workers that my neighbour has – I feel comfortable with them"

Andy thinks: "I wish I could get out more and meet people who like the same music as me"

Jasmine's situation
She enjoys living on her own, but finds it hard to cook herself a hot meal
Andy's situation
His physical disability makes it hard to get out and meet people
Jasmine's assessed need and goals
Assistance preparing meals
Andy's assessed need and goals
To make new friends and socialise
Jasmine's choice of support might be…
She would like a care worker to give her a home visit once a day but would prefer her own choice of care agency rather than one that we supply
Andy's choice of support might be…
To spend some of his personal budget on attending a community group. He will need to pay for travel there and back, and he also plans to pay for a piano lesson while he is there

Here are some more ideas…

  • hiring a personal assistant instead of having a care worker supplied by us
  • attending college or a class to learn new skills
  • equipment to help with your day-to-day living such as a specialised wheelchair
  • buying specialist equipment to make life easier
  • transport to visit family and friends
  • taking a short break away from home to give your carer a break
  • leisure activities you enjoy, such as joining a walking group, gym or sports club, instead of going to a day centre

Search for support and leisure services

You can search for organisations in our online directory of services for vulnerable adults, families and children, and young people:

Luton Directory

What can’t I spend my personal budget on?

  • things that are not directly related to your care and support
  • employing immediate family members who live in the same house as you
  • anything that is provided free by another service, such as the NHS
  • residential or nursing care (excluding respite care for up to four consecutive weeks in any 12 month period)
  • health needs
  • gambling, alcohol and tobacco
  • anything illegal (including paying people ‘cash in hand’)
  • paying debts, ordinary household bills, food, and rent or mortgage
  • services normally funded through other benefits or schemes (such as support into employment)
    anything that places you at risk
  • things that do not represent value for money (such as when there is a valid cheaper alternative)

How will I receive the money for my personal budget?

You will receive your personal budget via a direct payment.

The money for your direct payment will go directly to you, or to an authorised person acting on your behalf.
You will need to set up a separate bank account for your direct payment to be paid into.
You will be responsible for making sure it is spent on things which we have agreed in your care and support plan.

The Direct Payments Support Service at the Disability Resource Centre in Luton is an independent organisation which can offer information and support. They can help you by managing your direct payment, and they also offer a free payroll service if you are employing people to support you, such as a personal assistant. If you are unable to manage your direct payment without support, the DPSS can set up a ‘managed account’. This is where your direct payment money is held in a managed account and your care bills paid from it on your behalf.
© 2021 Luton Council, Town Hall, Luton LU1 2BQ