Mutual Exchange question
22/11/2009 7:51 pm
Hi i suceeded my mother's secure tenancy a few weeks ago. The HA informed me i had til feb to look for a 1 bedroom flat throught locator (as i am in a 3 bedroom). I have now found a couple with 1 child who want to swap with me, but i am worrying as to wether the HA would allow this as i am in a 3 bedroom. Can anybody put my mind at rest as i would rather have the choice of where i live rather than being told i have to live somewhere else.
What are the chances of them refusing the swap? And if they do refuse the swap can i turn around and demand an exchange or threaten them with legal action about remaining in my 3 bedroom property as they are making it difficult for me to swap in the first place?
They have told me i am only allowed to swap with the same HA i am with which limits me drastically becuase they want my property to go to one of their own tenants. Can they do this?? Where as on homeswapper there is no mention that you can only swap with the same HA?
Many thanks! Any info you can offer would be grateful?
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22/11/2009 11:57 pm
No you can swap with any Housing Association and you may be entitled to cash due to giving up several bedrooms.
Again has long has you and they have no rent appears and normally its up to your Housing Association whether accept the new tenant's. I suggest you do not lay out any money and wait until you in the office signing the papes to swap and also some of these Tenant's are time wasters. So ask them to bring they Housing Association forms (cannot remember the name but a particular name) ensure if you put your property on Homeswap you ensure you put the words no time wasters and come with transfer forms thinks is the word?
Again you can swap with any Housing Association or Council in the UK.
I do not know if you on Homeswap but remember you have a very good package. Get the best - get tenant's whom spend more on the property and ensure all written down what they and you are leaving behind and ensure that the Survey of the other Tenant done a proper inspection. I was involved and mine did a wonderful job but when I got here its was I it was a nightmare.
Be very careful and ensure all in order and remember again you have a very good package you ensure you get a good deal. Remember you may be lucky and get a Council Property with a Right to Buy.
I suggest on the morning going to sign the papers you pop around and double check all in order at the property you decided to take. If will not let you in go to the Housing Association and Council and tell them until you ensure all in order you will not sign.
I do not want to frighten you but no case here arrived and the tenant take the whole kitchen out.
Remember also you cannot get a repair done for at least six months. Only Health and Saferty issues.
If hit this then ring the Environmental Health Officer if you think a hazard.
You never know you luck you may get a wonderful tenant to transfer with.
Good Luck with your searching for a new home.
If in any doubt ring Shelter
23/11/2009 0:14 am
Hi again most Housing Association allow with a Mutual Exchange the parties a spare bedroom i.e. in one can have two and when you got three and downsizing you entitled to money due to your downsizing.
Only problem I see is if the family on any form of Benefits and due to the fact will only pay for what you need i.e. appears in they case two bedrooms. While the Housing Assocation may allow them to have the extra room the part under Housing Benefit's will not allow it.
Remember unless they can pay the top up - who knows??? -
Again I presume it depends where you live in London its very hard.
I heard around the Country could be a bit more helpful. But in London you got no chance. Again I know another case where did get the extra bedroom and two months later the Husand walk out and the Tenant was ask to downsize and the Housing Association and Court wouldn't change its mind.
So you can now see could be alot of hurdles to go over. So try and get the right Tenant from the start.
I sorry to tell you about the hurdles and remember people do let you down at the last minute.
Again speak to Shelter see if the February, 2010 deadline can be moved if you let down by Tenant/Tenant's but if this does happen please ensure you keep all the records to proof to the Housing Association exactly how many Tenant's willing to swap and then let you down at the last minute just in case take legal action against you.
Again be on guard with any tenant coming into your home. Please ensure you do all the checks around the new home and ask for proof that no ASB, Drug's or Issues and check out that Landlord because my new Housing Association is a very bad Housing Association not check out the Audit Reports on the Housing Association.
Sorry to go on and on
02/12/2009 3:57 pm
As a secure tenant you have certain rights of occupation, which mean that your landlord cannot take possession of the property unless it can prove to the Court that certain grounds are satisfied. Probably the most common ground is the failure to pay rent lawfully due.
One ground, which specifically applies to you as a person (other than a spouse or civil partner) who has succeeded to a secure tenancy, is where a property is under-occupied by the new succeeding tenant. A person is likely to be “under-occupying” if they do not require all the available bedrooms. This particular ground is a discretionary ground for possession which means that even though the Court finds that you are under-occupying it does not have to grant possession unless it also decides that it would be reasonable to do so and that suitable alternative accommodation is available.
Before it can start possession proceedings your landlord has to serve a notice on you confirming its intention to commence court action. The notice must be served more than six months but less than twelve months after your mother’s death.
From the information you have provided it appears that your landlord expects you to find alternative accommodation by bidding for another property through the “Locata Scheme”. I cannot see any reason in theory why you cannot also try and obtain alternative accommodation by way of a mutual exchange. However, as with any mutual exchange a landlord will usually have to consent to the new prospective tenants. Without seeing your tenancy agreement I cannot advise properly about the reasons your landlord could reasonably give for refusing to consent to a mutual exchange with the couple who currently want to swap with you. Your landlord may for instance be able to argue that:
• The couple would also be under-occupying as they on the face of it only require two bedrooms; or
• Its policy is always to offer properties which become (or will become) available due to under-occupation to its existing tenants or those on its waiting list.
It may be helpful for you to look at your tenancy agreement to check what, if any, restrictions are imposed on your ability to undertake a mutual exchange.
Should your landlord refuse to allow you to swap you could either take legal action yourself on the basis that the refusal was unreasonable or you could choose to stay put and defend any action by your landlord to evict you.
There are certain risks involved and you must therefore consider your options carefully. In particular, you could be in difficulties if you remain in your home and at some point your landlord directly offers you a property which you reject because you prefer to hold out for a swap. If proceedings are issued a possession order could be made against you at trial if the property offered is still available and the Court deems it to be suitable. Then you might find yourself with the limited choice of having to either accept that property or be evicted with no other accommodation to go to.
I would advise to take formal legal advice before embarking on a course of action.
02/12/2009 5:21 pm
thank you for your advice. I spoke to a housing officer yesterday who checked with her manager who said it was my right to exchange, she said as soon as she recieve both patry's mutual exchange paper work she would action an approve it, but i phoned to speak to her today but was told she was unavailable and cant but help feel i may be getting the brush off! Im so worried, obviously i dnt want it to go to court, and im am not contesting a downsize, it just seems that the properties advertised on locata are £100 a week for a 1 bedroom which i cant afford and at the moment i am paying £86.50 a week for a 3 bedroom house! any advice is apreciated. thank you.
02/12/2009 7:33 pm
Rebecca the above gentleman is right. Speak to Shelter if you can - may have to wait a bit of a time for a answer.
Unfortunately the rent thing - this is the way of the world. Put in the Homeway only looking for property of a particular Rent and normally the Council the cheapest.
I not sure how your stand if you get no reply to regarding the rent standard you want or how long your Landlord will be willing to wait. Unless you can proof one hundred that you cannot afford any more money than that I think you dead in the water. Sorry this is what I believe. I'm sorry I cannot tell you want you want to know exactly. With a three bedroom property going to one bedroom property you have lots of enquires but again the other person got to be entitled to it make sure you ask these question and especially if on Benefit's again Housing Benefit will only pay what they entitled too - unless in a position to pay the top up. Again I sorry you got to remember they will not be interested in what you pay its was they said you can afford. Again unless you can proof 100 per cent no way in a million years due to this and that. My daughter is 19 yrs old and at college earns roughly £50.00 per week making her pay £10.70 per week Rent and £7.00 per month Council Tax and costs her about £20.00 per week to get to college. See what she got to live on. See my point.
Where do you live