If you would like to apply for a home in this district - this may be rented housing, shared ownership or low cost housing schemes - you will need to register on the Warwick District HomeChoice scheme.
HomeChoice (Choice Based Lettings)
What is Homechoice?
HomeChoice is a Choice Based Lettings Scheme operated by Warwick District Council. The council is committed with its Partner Housing Associations to offer the greatest choice possible in the letting of housing, whilst also ensuring that housing goes to those with the greatest need.
All applicants have the opportunity to bid for properties having regard to household size, disability and eligibility. The HomeChoice Allocation Scheme enables applicants seeking housing to identify their level of priority within the Allocation Scheme and to develop an awareness of the availability of accommodation suitable to their needs within the district.
The HomeChoice Scheme will not only advertise council properties that are available in the district but also Housing Association properties and low cost housing.
Who can apply to join the HomeChoice register?
Anyone over 16 years old can apply to go on the register but tenancies will not usually be offered to applicants under 18. If you are under 18, please contact the Housing Advice Team (email@example.com), to discuss your options further. Some people are not entitled to social housing on the basis of their immigration status. If an applicant or member of their household has been guilty of unacceptable behaviour in the past, they may be excluded from the Housing Register.
How can I register?
You can download an application form or pick one up from one of our offices.
Please complete the application form fully, taking care to ensure that the information given is correct and the appropriate documentation provided. Any application for housing will need to be validated and you are expected to provide relevant identification and proof of residency before we can activate your application and allow you to apply for properties. Your completed application form can be returned to any of the offices listed on the back of the application form.
What happens after I’ve sent my form back?
When we have received your completed application form along with all the appropriate documentation your application will be assessed using the council’s banding scheme.
Your application will be processed within 21 working days, and the council will send you a letter confirming your:
- User numbers
- Registration date
- The band which you have been placed in
- The number of bedrooms you need
How does the banding system work?
The HomeChoice register is divided into four bands.
Applicants will have priority for 12 weeks and will be given priority for 50% of advertised properties
- Homeless applicants where the council has accepted a duty under Part VII of the Housing Act 1996 as amended.
- Medical Priority is granted in exceptional circumstances, when the applicant or a member of the applicant’s household has an immediately life threatening or progressive condition which is seriously affected by their current housing.
- People moving on from Supported Housing Projects under agreed referral arrangements between Supported Accomodation Provider and Warwick District Council.
- Special Agency Referral such as Warwickshire County Council Adult Health and Community Services, Children, Young People and Families Services and Probation. Referrals will be made under agreement with the departments concerned.
- Extraordinary cases.
* Homeowners who are adequately housed, or whose housing needs can be met through the sale or adaptation of the property will not be awarded medical priority but will be advised of their options and provided with advice and assistance.
Applicants will be given priority for 30% of advertised properties
- Medical and Welfare Priority may be awarded when an applicant or member of the households current housing conditions are having a major adverse effect on their medical condition and welfare but whose need to move is less urgent.
- Households in priority need and threatened with homelessness through no fault of their own. (This priority will only be awarded where the applicant is co-operating with the council to try to prevent their homelessness).
- Non Priority, unintentionally Homeless Applicants.
- Existing households who are council and Housing Association tenants within the district who are overcrowded.
The council considers that each of the following require one bedroom:-
- An adult couple.
- Any other person aged 16 or over.
- Two children of the same sex under the age of 16.
- Two children under the age of 10 regardless of their sex.
-Any other child whose main and principal home is with the applicant and they live there permanently.
- Households subject to a Demolition/Closing Order
- Existing council and RSL tenants within the district who are under-occupying their current accommodation by more than one bedroom and would move to smaller accommodation that would be more suitable to meet their change in need.
- Armed Forces applicants with 3 years or more service and having lived in the district for 2 years prior to joining, within 12 weeks of their discharge date.
- Succession Cases. (If you are a close relative of a tenant who has died and you have lived with them for at least 12 months continuously).
Applicants will be given priority for 20% of advertised properties
- Households in priority need who have been determined to have become intentionally homeless.
- People who are neither an owner nor tenant.
- Families with young children under 16 years living on the second floor or above.
- Applicants lacking or sharing more than one facility, for example, bath, toilet, kitchen, with another household.
- Applicants in housing need with or without a local connection.
- All applicants without a housing need with or without a local connection, including transfers.
- Home owners.
If you do not agree with the band you are in or have been told you are not eligible to register, you can ask the council to review your application. You must to do this in writing within 21 days of the date on the decision letter. Your case will be reviewed and you will be notified of the outcome in writing. Once you have received this decision, there is no further right of appeal. Contact 01926 456423 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
What is a Local Connection?
The HomeChoice Scheme requires the need to establish an applicant’s local connection in meeting one of the following:-
Has resided in the district through choice as their only or principal home for at least 6 months out of the last 12 months, or at least 3 years out of the last 5 years.
Employed in the district in permanent paid work, other than that of a casual nature.
Has a family connection in the district by virtue of a close family association, i.e. son, daughter, brother, sister, mother or father who are over 18 and occupied accommodation in the Warwick district for at least the last 5 years as their only or principal home before the date of the application.
Deliberately worsening circumstances
If the council considers that an applicant has acted unreasonably to make their housing circumstances deliberately worse than their previous accommodation without good reason or with the aim of qualifying for a higher banding, no additional priority will be awarded. Applicants will retain the banding and priority they held before worsening their circumstances.
What type of property do I qualify for?
Download the table showing who qualifies for what type of property (73kb, PDF).
Under the HomeChoice Policy, a dependent child is classed as under 18 years of age. Some properties have age and other restrictions. Please check property adverts for details.
How do I find out what properties are available?
All HomeChoice properties are advertised through
- The council and Housing Association Offices
- Supported Housing Providers
- This website
- The local Observer newspaper
- Parish Council Notice Boards
- Community Centres
- Local Libraries and One Stop Shops.
Adverts run on a fortnightly cycle from Thursday to Wednesday, giving you a full 7 days to place a bid. Bidding does not involve money; it simply means an expression of interest. So when you ‘bid’, it just means you are interested. If there are no properties vacant then no advert will appear.
What information will be in the advert?
The information contained in the advert will include the following
- Type of property
- Number of bedrooms or number of people suitable for the property
- Rent charged and service charges
- Any specific letting criteria i.e. age or number of children restrictions
- Property reference number
- If there are any age restrictions, for example if a property is only suitable for people aged 60+
- The band to which preference will be given
How do I bid?
When you see a property that you like and that is suitable for your needs, you can bid for it in any of the following ways
On the internet
The Customer Services Centre is open from 8 am to 7 pm Monday to Thursday, 8 am to 6 pm Friday and 9 am to 1 pm Saturday. There is a telephone available in Housing and Benefits Reception at Riverside House for you to use to place your bids. After you have chosen which properties you would like to bid for, telephone 01926 412828 and a member of the Customer Services Team will take your details and place your bids for you. You will need to have your User Number, Password and the Property Reference Numbers for the properties you want to bid for.
When you telephone, you will be asked for your User Number first and asked to confirm your Name and Date of Birth. If you don’t have your User Number, you will be asked to confirm your Name, Address and Date of Birth. You will then be asked for the Property Reference Numbers of the properties
you want to bid for in order of preference.
How many properties can I bid for?
You may bid for up to five properties in each advert as long as you match what the advert asks for. Please bid carefully and make sure you bid in order of preference as if you are top for more than one property, you will only be considered for one. If you are unable to bid yourself or have difficulty, you may nominate someone to do it on your behalf. Just tell us the name of the person and their address and we will add their details to your application. If there is no-one you can ask for help, we have members of staff who will assist. Please telephone 01926 412828 for assistance.
How will I know if my bid has been successful?
Properties will be allocated to the applicant who has the greatest housing need for the size of property advertised and has waited the longest in each band. A bid for a property will not be considered if the applicant’s household does not meet the size, age or disability requirements for that property unless there are exceptional circumstances that need to be taken into account. If there are no bids from people in the preferred band, the property will be offered to the highest placed applicant from the next band. If there is more than one person bidding for the same property with the same waiting time and housing need, the property will go to the one who bid first. If you are successful you will be notified in writing or contacted by telephone within a week after the bidding closes.
Landlords will have the right to refuse to allocate properties in circumstances where a property is considered unsuitable for an applicant, or where an applicant has the financial means to assist themselves.
Feedback on let properties
Details of the successful applicants band and their band date will be published on the website. This information will help you decide where you have the best
chance of being re-housed and to consider other housing options available to you.
What if my circumstances change?
If any of the information on your original application alters, you need to notify us. Changes of circumstances should be notified to the Housing Advice Team as
soon as possible, using a Change of Circumstances form. You can download a ‘Change of Circumstances’ form or you can visit any of the council offices to complete the form. The form should be fully completed and used for the following changes in circumstances:-
- Any confirmed pregnancy
- Any member of the family or any other person on the application who has left the accommodation
- Any changes of name
- Any additions to the family (Proof of residence and ID will be required and proof of Child Benefit if a child)
- Any change in income or savings
- Changes in status of accommodation (e.g. Notice to Quit)
If you have changed your address, you will need to complete a new application form.
It is important that you keep us informed of any changes so that your application details are up to date. If you bid successfully for a property and we do not have your correct details, you may not be made an offer of accommodation.
For advice about Homechoice contact the Housing Advice team on 01926 456446/456431or Email: email@example.com.
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