How does the Housing Register work?
The way that applications are processed will mean that your application, once verified, will be placed into individual ‘Bands’ according to the answers you have given to the questions.
Do I qualify for Social Housing in Ceredigion?
You qualify for Social Housing in Ceredigion if you can say yes to the following:
1. If you or a member of your household is aged 16 or over
2. You meet our Local Connection Criteria
4. Your household earns less than £35,000 per annum and/or you have less than £75,000 in savings and/or equity
5. You do not have a history of Anti-Social Behaviour
6. You have no history of persistent rent arrears
How do I apply for Housing in Ceredigion?
You can apply ‘on line’ for Housing by entering www.ceredigionhousingoptions.cymru in the search bar on your computer
What if I don’t have a computer at home?
You can find free internet access at your local library, Council offices (reception areas), tourist information centres and support agencies such as the Care Society, Age Cymru, CAB
What if I need help to do this?
If you have difficulty applying on line there will be staff available to assist you in this process at the venues mentioned above. Please ask for help if you need assistance.
What can I do if I cannot apply on line?
You can contact the Housing Register Team by telephone on 01545 574123 and they can take an application from you over the telephone.
Do I need to answer every question to register?
All questions marked with a * MUST be answered or you will be unable to complete the application.
What do I need to tell you?
You need to tell us about you (as the main applicant) and if you have a partner then we will need those details also. We will ask for 5 years housing history so please have those details available. We shall also need details of any other people to be housed with you. Children who always live with you are to be included here. Other questions will be asked regarding your current housing situation to enable us to properly assess the Band your application should be awarded.
What happens if my circumstances change?
Please inform us as soon as possible if there is a change in your situation as this may change the Band that you are in.
How many area choices can I make?
You can choose up to 5 areas to live in within Ceredigion.
What are the Local Connection Criteria?
There are a number of factors that are considered to be ‘local connections’. They are:
· When you apply, you can show that you have lived in Ceredigion for the last five years.
· When you apply, you can show that you have been employed in Ceredigion for that last three years.
· When you apply, you can show that you have close family living in Ceredigion; and they have been here for at least 10 years.
· You or a member of your household served or are still serving in HM Forces (in either the Regular and Reserves), and have lived in Ceredigion at some point for at least five years.
What counts as ‘close family’?
Close family means parents – or parental equivalents, and/or siblings.
What is ‘priority need’?
The term ‘priority need’ means that you or a member of your household fulfil one or more of the following criteria:
· You are a pregnant woman
· You have dependent children
· You are vulnerable as a result of old age, mental illness or handicap or physical disability or other special reason
· You are homeless or threatened with homelessness as a result of an emergency such as flood, fire or other disaster
· You are aged 16-17 years old
· You are aged 18-21 year old leaving care or at risk of financial or sexual exploitation
· You became homeless after leaving the armed forces
· You are a former prisoner who became homeless after being released from custody
· You are vulnerable as a result of fleeing domestic violence or the threat of domestic violence.
Housing need means one or more of the following things:
· If you or a member of your household needs to move on medical or welfare grounds
· If you are living in insanitary or unsatisfactory housing
· If you are and your household are living in overcrowded housing.
· If you or a member of your household need to move to be cared for or to care for another person, where not to move would cause hardship.
· If you or a member of your household is in ‘priority need’ as a result of being vulnerable.
What is included in ‘household earnings’?
Household earnings means all money that is earnt by the applicant and their partner/ spouse. This does not include earnings from any non-dependent children.
What is equity?
Equity is any savings (excluding pension savings) or property that you our your partner/spouse own or part own.
What does Anti-Social Behaviour mean?
Anti-Social Behaviour is defined as “Behaviour by a person which causes or is likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress to one or more persons not of the same household as the person”. (Antisocial Behaviour Act 2003 & Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011).
What counts as persistent Anti-Social Behaviour?
A history of Anti-Social Behaviour could be that it was serious enough to result in being evicted.
Does it need to be by the Applicant?
No. The Anti-Social Behaviour could be carried out by a member of the household who is intending to live in the property
What are rent arrears?
Rent arrears is money owed for rent to either a Social Landlord, Local Authority or Private Landlord
What counts are persistent arrears?
The amount of money owed can vary. However, arrears that have not been addressed for a considerable time will be viewed as persistent.
What are Priority Bands?
There are six Priority Bands. Each Band groups together different housing need factors and puts them in order priority. Priority Band A, B and C include applications who are in a ‘housing need’ that is identified in legislation.
Priority Band A, B and C also include some ‘housing needs’ that are priorities for Ceredigion. They are:
• A Ceredigion Social Housing tenant occupying an adapted property for which they have no need
• A Ceredigion Social Housing tenant under-occupying current accommodation by one or more bedrooms
• Resident in Ceredigion and in full time (or equivalent) employment, for the previous five years, prior to the date of application
• Planned discharge/ move-on from institution, Supported project and/or Care system (excluding prison)
• Economic factors / Key Workers - move closer to work (full time/ permanent position
Priority Band D and E includes other housing need that does not require Social Housing.
Priority Band F includes applicants who do not qualify for consideration for Social Housing for a number of reasons.
You and your household’s application may be placed in Priority Band F if you have one or more of the following factors:
• You or a member of your household have a history of persistent rent arrears.
• You or a member of your household has a history of Anti-Social Behaviour that was serious enough to be be grounds to seek eviction. You do not have to have been evicted, however the offences must have been serious enough, that it could have resulted in eviction.
• You and your household do not fulfil any local connection criteria
• You or a member of your household has deliberately worsened your housing situation.
• You and your household have refused a reasonable offer of accommodation, made through the Common Housing Register
• You or a member of your household has equity and/or savings of more than £75K.
• You have a household income of more than £35K.
What are Quotas and how do they work?
The quota system allows different housing need groups to be considered for housing. This helps to make sure housing allocations can address a cross section of need.
The quota system is designed to allocate housing from Priority Bands A, B and C in the following way:
• Priority Band A = 40% of all allocations per year.
• Priority Band B = 30% of all allocations per year.
• Priority Band C = 30% of all allocations per year.
What is a Reasonable Offer?
A reasonable offer is one that takes into consideration the following factors that are asked during the application.
· Cultural needs
· Number of bedrooms
· Property type
· Support needs
Can I refuse a reasonable offer?
Yes. However, if you refuse a reasonable offer you will be moved into Priority Band F for up to 12 months
What does deliberately worsening housing circumstances mean?
You will be placed in Priority Band F if you have chosen to do something that has made your housing situation worse. Alternatively, you have failed to take action which could have improved your housing situation.
What is Older Person’s Accommodation?
The properties that are available specifically for older people include, Sheltered Accommodation, Extra Care housing and designated rural bungalows.
Designated Rural Bungalows, are properties that have been identified by the Registered Social Landlord's as being best suited for older people.
Who is Older Person's Accommodation for?
Different people have different housing needs. For some older people the need for more accessible and supported accommodation is a priority. Therefore OPA is made available to meet that need. The policy states that applicants are able to apply from the age of 55 years. This is to make sure the accommodation targets the correct people.
What if I need accessible and supportive accommodation and I am not yet 55 years old?
If you have additional support needs then the accommodation available for older people could be an option for you.
Do all household members need to be 55 years or older?
To be able to apply for older persons housing one or more members of the household need to be 55 years or older. Not all applicants need to be over 55.
How many choices do I have?
You are able to choose as many or as few sheltered schemes as you want. This is to make sure that you are able have your needs clearly understood at the point of application.
What is Accessible Housing?
Accessible Housing is housing that has been specially built or adapted to make it more useable for people physical impairments. There are different types of adaptations for different levels of need.
Who can apply for Accessible Housing?
You can apply for Accessible Housing if you or a member of your family has a physical disability or impairment which requires accessible housing. There is no age restriction for Accessible housing.
What are the Local Connection criteria for Accessible Housing?
The Local Connection criteria are the same for all housing registers, but with one additional factor for Accessible Housing. If you or a member of your household has accepted a definite offer of employment in Ceredigion, you will meet the Local Connection conditions.
How many choices do I have?
You are able to choose up to 10 areas according to your preference. You do not need to use all your options.
My needs are very limited due to my specific needs, what should I do?
If you or your household cannot chose more than one area because your housing needs are specific and complex, then the register will recognise this. You will be entitled to extra ‘time waiting’ to support your position on the register.
How is my Accessible Housing Application verified?
If you apply for accessible housing your application will be verified by an Occupational Therapist to confirm what type of housing you or your household require. The type of housing on offer is:
• Full Wheelchair
• Part Wheelchair
• Lifetime Homes
• Step Free
• Three steps internal/external
• Specific Adaptation
What is ‘time waiting’?
‘Time waiting’ is the period of time you have been registered on one or more of the Common housing registers. This starts from the ‘effective date’ when your application has been accepted and is active on the register. Effective dates can vary on each register, depending on when you applied for them. Time waiting is important as allocations will be made to applicants in date order.
What can change my effective dates?
There are a few things that can alter your effective date. If you move into a different band, your effective date can change:
• Moving up a Priority Band (for instance B to A) your effective date will change to begin again from the date of the change.
• Moving down a Priority Band (for instance from A to B) your effective date will stay the same.
• Moving from Priority Band F to your original band as a result of a change of circumstance (e.g. due to the resolution of arrears), your effective date will begin again from the date of the change.
• If you register for a either the Designated Older Person's Housing or the Accessible Housing Register, then you will have effective dates for those registers as well as an effective date for the original register. This means that you may have more than one effective date depending on which housing register you have applied for.
Can I get information about other housing opportunities?
Yes, by completing your details on line our system can look at the answers you have given and will produce an individual housing options report for you.
What type of information can I expect?
This could include details on how to access private accommodation in Ceredigion, affordable housing options and access to an ‘Older persons’ waiting list and an ‘accessible’ waiting list for applicants who require purpose built accommodation or who need specific requirements due to disability
Can my pets be rehoused with me?
There are a number of landlords who will not accept any pets in their properties. Please make sure the details of your pets are included in your information as this may affect the type of property you may be able to access.