Introduction to Housing Associations
What are Housing Associations?
Housing Associations are independent social landlords who supply affordable housing in addition to housing provided by us.
They provide accommodation for single people, couples and families. Some Housing Associations specialise in providing supported housing for specific groups of people such as single people, the elderly or people with special needs.
We work closely with several Housing Associations to develop affordable housing for rent and other affordable tenures like shared ownership and intermediate rent.
We have nomination rights to many of the properties for rent in Stevenage that are managed by Housing Associations. When new properties are built or when they are empty, eligible applicants on the housing register can bid under the Choice Based Lettings scheme.
Can Housing Association tenants transfer to a council property?
Housing Association tenants in Stevenage can apply to join the Housing Register for a transfer to a council property in the same way as council tenants. Applications are prioritised in the same way as council tenants on the Housing Register.
How are Housing Association tenancies different to council tenancies?
Like us, Housing Associations provide homes which are affordable, permanent and secure. Housing Association tenancies are called assured tenancies and they offer many of the same rights to tenants as council secure tenancies, although Housing Association tenants do not have the right to buy.
Housing Association tenants can apply to us for Housing Benefit to help with their rent in the same way that council and private tenants can.
How do you become a Housing Association tenant?
Some Housing Associations operate their own waiting lists and accept direct applications for housing although they may occasionally close their waiting lists in order to keep waiting times manageable. Although most Housing Associations with properties in Stevenage only accept nominations for re-housing from us, those that have sheltered housing in Stevenage usually have an open waiting list for this accommodation.
When a Housing Association home becomes available for nomination, it will be advertised in the choice based letting magazine Home4U in the same way as available council homes. Applicants can bid for the homes and the successful bidder will be nominated to the Housing Association. The Housing Association then decides whether or not to accept the nomination. They may sometimes reject a nomination if the applicant does not meet the criteria of their own allocations scheme.
Currently Housing Associations own and manage around 2,000 rented homes in Stevenage.
Housing Advice Service
Stevenage Borough Council