Housing applicants to get more choice but others to be denied property
Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Central Government, Communities, Local Government
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Major changes to the system which allocates social housing across North Yorkshire are set to give applicants greater flexibility and choice when choosing a property.
However, those with a history of anti-social behaviour, those without a local connection and people who provide false information are to be stricken from housing lists.
Introduced by North Yorkshire Home Choice (NYHC), a partnership of councils and housing associations, Choice Based Lettings (CBL) will allow eligible people to bid for social housing across the region.
Prompted by changes to welfare and localism acts, consultation with members of the public and existing and prospective tenants on the CBL scheme took place 12 months ago.
The government's changes have given more flexibility to housing providers in the way they manage waiting lists, use housing stock, determine which applicants qualify for social housing and respond to local needs and local circumstances.
Starting at the end of this month, the North Yorkshire changes include:
• Giving local people priority by restricting the register to people who have a local connection.
• Supporting "balanced and sustainable communities" by preventing people with a history of serious anti-social behaviour from qualifying for social housing.
• Excluding homeowners who have no recognised housing need either for economic or social reasons.
• Introducing a financial threshold for people who have a combined household income and/or capital and assets of £60,000 plus and who may be able to meet their own housing needs.
• Allocating properties to meet applicants’ assessed bedroom need.
• Persons who provide false information, deliberately withhold information or who deliberately worsen their housing circumstances will be stricken from the list.
Tom Brittain, chair of the NYHC partnership board said: “These changes will help North Yorkshire Home Choice deliver its allocation policy to give priority to those in greatest housing need, at a time when the demand for social housing is simply outstripping supply.
“We have a duty to be as fair as possible and these new criteria should help do just that while clarifying the allocations process.”
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