1. Who can apply for properties through Leicestershire Choice based Lettings?
Anyone aged 16 years or over may apply to join the Housing Register.
However, there are some people who are not eligible to be included on the Housing Register. These are:
2. What is CBL(Choice based Lettings)?
Instead of the Council or housing association choosing the property, we will advertise all the properties which we have vacant. It is then up to the homeseeker (applicant) to decide if they want to be considered for the particular property, as long as they meet the lettings criteria ie a single person will not be able to bid for a 3 bed house. They do this by bidding.
Vacant Council and housing association properties will be advertised on the same website- a one stop shop for social housing.
3. Which landlords are participating in CBL?
The 7 Leicestershire District Councils (but not Leicester City Council- they have a separate CBL scheme) are:
Also, all the housing associations that have property in the county of Leicestershire (but not Leicester City)
4. What do we mean by Bidding for property?
This is about expressing an interest in an advertised property, it does not involve money in any way.
5. How many bids do you get?
You are allowed to bid for upto 2 proeprties per advertising cycle.
6. How often are the advertising cycles?
These are every week. The bidding cycle opens at midnight on a Thursday and closes at midnight the following Tuesday. No bidding cycle on Wednesday.
As the cycle is open for a week, there is no advantage in bidding early. It is NOT first come first served. If anything, bidding later in the cycle will give a more accurate idea of your final position in the queue.
7. Where are properties advertised?
Properties are advertised:
Please remember that if you are using a computer in a public place you must remember to LOGOFF otherwise the next person will be able to see your details.
8. How can I join the Housing Register?
In order to join the housing register you will need to complete an application form. This can be done in various ways:
Tenants with one of the Councils or Housing associations wanting to transfer should also fill in this form.
You only need to fill in one form, if you want housing anywhere in the Leicestershire subregion. If you send the form to any one of the Councils, it will be administered by them on behalf of all the other districts.
9. If I only want a housing association property, how do I apply?
You will need to fill in the same housing form used to apply for a council property. Most of the housing associations have closed their housing registers so people need only complete this form.
You don't need to fill in multiple application forms with each different landlord. (De Montfort HA are the only one keeping theirs for the time being). Nearly all of the housing association properties will be advertised through the CBL scheme anyway.
10. What do I do if I only want a mutual exchange?
You should apply on line at www.homeswapper.co.uk.
Only if you have found a homeswap partner do you need to fill in a housing application form so we have all your details. You need to write across the top of the form- MUTUAL EXCHANGE before you send it in (helps us to find it easier). You also need to complete the single page`Mutual Exchange form' telling us who your are swapping with. Insert/Remove Bulleted List
11. What other documents do I need to provide?
WE DO NOT NEED ORIGINALS. You can scan your documents and send them via email or send them in the post.
Along with your application form you will need to provide the following:
Village connection - within the application you will be asked to identify any village or parish connections applicable to you, this should also include any connections you may have to a town, ie. Hinckley. It is important to notify us of any connections you may have within any area. This may give you more priority when registering your interest during the weekly bidding cycles with regards to some new housing schemes.
Once we begin to assess your housing application, we may find that there are some additional proofs or clarification required. If this is the case we will contact you via letter or phone.
Until all the proofs are provided your housing application cannot be fully assessed to determine whether you are eligible to be accepted onto the register and allowed to bid/register your interest in properties.
12. How will I know that I have been accepted onto the Housing Register?
You will receive a letter giving you details of your reference number, the band you have been placed in, the date you have been registered from and the sizes of property that your are able to bid for.
13. What are Priority Bands?
This is a way of recording your housing need. Applications will be assessed according to their circumstances and placed in one of 4 bands, Priority, High, Medium and Low. Within each band applications are placed in date order.
14. What do I do if I there is a change in my circumstances
Should there be a change of circumstances, it is your responsibility to notify us. you can do this in one of two ways:
As long as you have your reference number and memorable date, you can update your own details online, by updating the online application form or by going to the `Contact us` section on the top menu bar.
When you make an amendment, a `pencil` symbol will appear next to that section of the application form. It will remain there until the back office has acknowledged this change. If proofs eg birth certificates are required, the amendment will not be confirmed and the application updated until this is received.
b. Paper copy
A paper copy of a change of address, change of circs, medical/mobility form can be posted to us.
14. Do I need to renew my application each year?
Yes, once a year, on the anniversary of your application, you will be asked to update your application. If you do not return the form, we will write and tell you that your application has been cancelled.
16. What if someone in my household has a medical condition?
You can fill in a medical/mobility form-online or we can send them a paper copy.
The Council may decide to give additional priority because of these medical reasons. If additional priority is given for medical reasons, then priority will only apply when you bid for properties that are suitable.
17. What information will the property adverts contain?
The adverts will give the landlord, location, size, rent and other features of the property. Where available a photograph of the property or a similar house type will be provided and, if you are viewing on-line, you will be able to access information about the local area(Up your street) and facilities.
The icons (pictures) in the advert will tell you if there are any age requirements or other restrictions on who can bid. The advert may also indicate if preference will be given to applications from certain types of household.
18. How can I bid for properties?
You can bid for a property in a variety of ways. You can bid online or by telephone bidding.
You need to have your registration number and memorable date in order to bid.
(b)To view only
If you want to view all properties being advertised that week
you will need to have your registration number and memorable date in order to bid.
Press 1,2,3 depending which property bid you want to change
Press 1 to cancel the bid
To review or cancel another bid press 1
Press 2 to exit
Press 3 to exit to exit
19. How do I know how many other people are interested in the same property?
You will be told your position in the queue for a particular property at the time of bidding. This is likely to change as other people bid for the same property. It could vary continually up until the closing time of that advertising cycle.
You can phone the bidding line or go online at anytime during the advertising cycle to get your up to date position.
The total number of bidders is only published once the property has been let.
20. How do landlords decide who is made the offer?
Once the closing date for bids has passed a shortlist of interested applicants is drawn up.
The shortlist is in order of eligibility according to the restrictions stated in the advert details for that property. The highest placed applicant (homeseeker) will normally be offered the property.
The shortlist is ordered by highest band first- ie Priority band then High, then Medium then Low band.
Within each band it is ordered by the earliest registration date first.
21. Can the landlord refuse to make the offer to highest placed homeseeker?
Yes. Landlords work their way from top to bottom on the shortlist. There may be reasons why the homeseeker is bypassed for an offer eg the homeseeker owes rent or has other housing related debts and cannot reach an agreement on how to repay them.
When the homeseeker has failed a credit check - for housing association properties
They are a Council or Housing Association tenant and legal action has been taken against them because the homeseeker has broken their tenancy conditions.
They have not provided the required documentary evidence to support their application by the date given
Their circumstances have changed and they no longer meet the criteria for the property.
They have provided incorrect or misleading information
22. How many offers do they have?
They will be given an opportunity to view the property first before they decide whether they would like to accept it or not. If they refuse the offer, fail to respond to an offer letter, or miss a pre-arranged viewing appointment, then this will be counted as on of your offers.
23. Results of lettings
Information about homes that have been successfully let is published on the website and in the property newsletter.
The result shows the address, property type, the number of applicants that bid for the property and the band and registration date of the successful homeseeker.
24. How do I request a review of a decision?
If you disagree with any of the following decisions you can request a review:
To request a review your must contact us within 21 days of the date you are notified of the decision and the reason for it. You may provide additional information in writing if you wish as this can be taken into account when the review is carried out.
You will normally be advised of the outcome of the review within 8 weeks. You may not request a further review.