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Home swap: landlords join forces for huge home exchange event

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Home swap: landlords join forces for huge home exchange event

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Published by Nadia Khan for Brent Housing Partnership in Housing and also in Communities, Local Government, Universal Credit

Image of Home Swap Event Image of Home Swap Event

  • Over 800 social housing residents attend Home Swap event in North London
  • Over 500 properties are registered at the event - believed to be the largest ever Home Swap event in the UK

Home swapping events are sweeping across the social housing world as tenants look for ways of moving home in response to their changing needs and to help manage the impact of housing benefit reforms.

On Wednesday 30 July, over 11 London  housing providers and local authorities, including seven housing associations, held one of the UK’s largest ever “home swap” events,  to help match their residents who are looking to downsize with those who are looking for more space.

Over 800 tenants visited The Welford Centre in Wembley in search of their new home - covering the three London Boroughs of Brent, Barnet and Harrow.

The participating housing providers and local authorities included: Genesis, L&Q, Innisfree, Metropolitan, The Hyde Group, Catalyst Housing, Network Stadium, Brent Housing Partnership (BHP), London Borough of Brent, London Borough of Harrow, London Borough of Barnet, Circle Housing Group and Barnet Homes. 

Representatives from Homeswapper also attended, helping the residents to register their properties online.

Mary Kennedy, a first time visitor to the event, said:
“This is my first time coming to an event like this.  I’ve got a three bedroom house, but because of some health issues I’m looking to downsize and move into a ground floor flat or bungalow. I think that events like this are great – and I’m going to follow up on some that I’ve seen.”

Laurence Coaker, Head of Housing Needs for Brent Council said:
“By joining forces, social landlords are providing their residents with a greater choice of homes and more opportunity to move to a more affordable or better suited property.  

“Since the introduction of housing benefit reforms last year, housing providers across London have increased the support and services that they provide - these Home Swap events are just one of the many ways they are helping.” 

Pauline Somers, Financial Inclusion Manager at Brent Housing Partnership said:
“This event was an excellent example of local authorities and housing providers working together to provide advice, guidance and practical help for residents who are looking to move house for various reasons including the impact of welfare reform. By organising an event such as this, residents were able to connect with others also looking to move into suitable sized accommodation, making the whole swapping process much easier. The event was a huge success and we are looking to provide more days like this in the near future.” 

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