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WELCOME TO Bucks Home Choice

Bidding Cycle

Bidding on:

Issue 300

opens Thursday:

29 June at 9am

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Frequently Asked Questions


New Policy


Why have you changed your policy?

We have made the changes in response to the Government guidelines brought about by the Localism Act 2011. When making the changes we sought to take into consideration matters such as the changes to welfare benefits, the very high level of demand for social housing and its limited availability.

Who will qualify under the new policy?

Applicants must be living or working in one of the partnership districts for two years immediately preceding their application and have a degree of housing need in order to qualify for Bucks Home Choice. There are a small number of exceptions:

• Current or former armed services personnel

• Those aged over 55, seeking aged persons accommodation

• Care leavers who were living in the partnership area prior to being placed out of the district

• Applicants owed a full homeless duty by one of the councils in the partnership


General


Do you have a transfer register?

Bucks Home Choice will only consider transfer applicants who have some level of housing need. If you have the adequate number of bedrooms for your family size, you will not normally qualify, however, your landlord may operate their own transfer register, but you will need to contact them directly. An alternative would be to consider a mutual exchange. You can register at www.homeswapper.co.uk to search for other tenants that want to swap. Any exchange will require your landlord’s permission.

How long will I have to wait to get a new home?

There is a shortage of affordable rented housing and you should consider all housing options available to you. If you are accepted onto Bucks Home Choice, the length of time you have to wait will be dependent on your priority banding, the type of property you require and for how long you have been registered. Feedback is provided about previous properties, including the priority band and waiting time of the successful applicant. Some areas are more popular than others, so being flexible about the type of property and area in which you wish to live may reduce your waiting time.

I do not live in the area covered by Bucks Home Choice, but my family does - will I be able to join?

No. Applicants must be living or working in one of the partnership districts for two years immediately preceding their application in order to qualify for Bucks Home Choice. There are a small number of exceptions to this:

• Current or former armed services personnel

• Those aged over 55, seeking aged persons accommodation

• Care leavers who were living in the partnership area prior to being placed out of the district

• Applicants owed a full homeless duty by one of the councils in the partnership

More information can be found by looking at our Policy. This can be found under the Scheme Guide tab on the left of the home page.

If I move home, what should I do?

If you move home, you must complete a Change of Circumstances Form, which will take approximately 30 minutes. You can do this online, when you login to your member home page. Whilst we are processing your change of circumstances you will not be able to bid for properties.

I have had a baby - do I need to tell you?

Yes. You must complete a Change of Circumstances Form, which will take approximately 30 minutes. You can do this online, when you login to your member home page. Whilst we are processing your change of circumstances you will not be able to bid for properties. You will usually be asked to bring in, email or mail a copy of the baby’s full birth certificate and proof of child benefit/tax credits.

I want to add or remove somebody from my application - what should I do?

You must complete a Change of Circumstances Form, which will take approximately 30 minutes. You can do this online, when you login to your member home page. Whilst we are processing your change of circumstances you will not be able to bid for properties. You may be asked to provide additional information about new household members.

I have a new phone number or email address - what should I do?

Go to the ‘My Details’ tab on the top of your member page, where you can edit your contact details. You do not need to complete a Change of Circumstances Form.

I have notice to leave my accommodation - what should I do?

If you are going to be homeless in the next 28 days you must contact your local authority immediately for advice and assistance. Our member page contains a lot of information about the options available to you, including how to find an alternative privately rented property.

I cannot login to my account

To access your account you will need your Bucks Home Choice registration number and your date of birth. You also need to select from a drop down list the prefix of the partner that is managing your application i.e. VAHT. You will find your registration number at the top of your assessment letter.

I have lost my Bucks Home Choice Number

You can find your application number at the top of the assessment correspondence that we have sent through. If you cannot locate this please contact the partner that is managing your application.

Where did I come in the shortlist?

When you login to your member page it will indicate roughly where you are on the shortlist. If you are offered the property or are invited to view the property, you will be contacted by either the landlord directly or the partner that is managing your application. We are not usually able to provide detailed information about shortlists until the property has been allocated.

I have completed a Change of Circumstances - when will I be able to bid again?

We aim to process applications and changes of circumstances within 10 working days. Where further information is required your application will not be made live and you will not be able to bid. During busy times this may take longer.

Why is my account suspended?

There are a variety of reasons why your account might be suspended. Normally it is because you are waiting for a reassessment following a change of circumstances. Sometimes we will suspend your application for another reason, but we will usually write to you to explain.

I don’t think my assessment is correct - what should I do?

We will normally write to applicants to explain the outcome of their assessment, and you should read this letter carefully. You can find more details about the assessment process in the Bucks Home Choice Allocation Policy.

If you still disagree with your assessment you should write into the partner managing your application and ask for your assessment to be reviewed. You should include as much information as possible and state clearly why you disagree. An officer that was not involved in your original assessment will review the information provided.

I have a medical problem - will this affect my application?

It depends on the type of medical condition and your current housing circumstances. We will only award additional priority if your current home is having an adverse impact on the health of a member of your household, and providing alternative accommodation will reduce the impact. You can find more details about the medical assessment process in the Bucks Home Choice Allocation Policy.

If you think you are entitled to extra medical priority you should contact the partner who manages your application.