The Housing (Scotland) Act 2014 introduced a number of changes regarding the allocation of social housing in Scotland. These changes are due to come into effect from 1 May 2019. As a result all Social Landlords will be required to review their Allocations Policy to ensure it complies with the Act.
The Association reviews its Allocations Policy regularly and consults with the Tenants Forum on any changes. However the Act has introduced a requirement for social landlords to consult with applicants, tenants and registered tenants organisations on any proposed changes to its Allocations Policy.
In order to seek the views of applicants, tenants and registered tenants organisations on these proposed changes the Association has produced a summary of the proposed changes to the Allocations Policy. These changes are listed below. A full copy of our current Allocations Policy is also available
This Bill was introduced in 21 November 2013 and introduces changes to social housing providers Allocations Policies. These come into force in May 2019
The new rules make changes to :
- Landlords Consultation on changes to Allocations Policies
- Reasonable Preference Categories
- Taking into account ownership of property
- Minimum length of time for applications to have been in place prior to an allocation
1 – Consultation
Landlords are required to consult with Applicants, Tenants, Registered Tenant Organisations and other persons as the landlord sees fit
This event today is part of Angus Housing Associations Consultation exercise. We will ask you for your views and opinions about these changes.
These proposed changes will also be on our website. A full copy of our existing and proposed Allocations Policy is also available
2 - Reasonable Preference Categories
These are the categories of housing applications that must be give reasonable preference in Allocations over all other categories
The reasonable preference categories previously were defined in the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987 and were:
- Persons are occupying houses which do not meet the tolerable standard;
- Persons who are occupying overcrowded houses;
- Persons who have large families;
- Persons who are living under unsatisfactory housing conditions; and
- Persons who are homeless or threatened with homelessness
The New Reasonable Preference Categories as stated in the 2014 Act are:
- Homeless persons and persons threatened with homelessness and who have unmet housing need
- People living in unsatisfactory housing conditions who have unmet housing need
- Tenants of a social landlord who are under occupying their home
Angus Housing Association has a comprehensive Allocations Policy that does not require drastic changes to ensure it complies with the new rules however we propose the following amendments:
- It is proposed to merge two of our existing groups to create one homeless group . Group 3 – Applicants Living in Insecure or Temporary Accommodation & Group 5 – Requiring Independent Housing will become Group 3 - Living in Insecure or Temporary Accommodation or Requiring Independent Housing. We have amended the number of points awarded to ensure all homeless applicants are pointed in accordance with the seriousness of their housing situation.
- In order to ensure that preference is given to tenants under occupying a large home it is proposed that we allow these applicants to be allocated a property with one more bedroom than they require. This is an attempt to ensure that we meet the revised quotas for reasonable preference
- Group 6 - Care & Support and Special Housing Circumstances has been split into two groups Group 5 - Special Housing Circumstance and Group 6 - Care & Support. This ensures that applicants in the reasonable preference categories are given more weighting.
All other groups remain the same
We will then amend the quotas for each group to ensure that the reasonable preference categories are given priority. At the moment quotas are set based on the size of each group
3 - Taking Ownership Into Account
Our current policy does not take property ownership into account. Minor proposed changes to the policy where Group 1 - Overcrowding and Group 2 - Under Occupancy have been amended to show the points are awarded to for tenants of social landlords only may effect owner occupiers who currently may be awarded points in this group. Owner occupiers who have an unmet housing need such as threatened with homelessness or medical will be pointed in the appropriate group
4 – Minimum time before Allocation
Angus Housing Association’s allocations Policy does not require that applications have been on the list for a minimum period prior to an allocation therefore no adjustments are necessary in the policy.