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Useful Information

Who can apply for properties through Harborough Homesearch?

You must have been accepted onto Harborough Home Search's Housing Register to be able to apply for either rented or low cost home ownership properties through Harborough Home Search. Anyone aged 16 years or over may apply to join the Housing Register.

How do I apply to join the Housing Register?

You will need to complete an application form and submit this together with the proofs required.

What other documents do I need to provide?

Along with your application form you will need to provide the following:

Proof of identity for all adults over the age of 16 - copy of photo ID such as passport/driving licence, bus pass ect. Birth certificates will be accepted if no photo ID is available.

Proof of address - copy of utility bill dated within the last 3 months.

Proof of income  - copies of 2 recent wage slips if paid weekly or 1 month if paid monthly or benefit entitlement showing amount received. if self employed provide the last year's previous accounts.

A copy of your current tenancy agreement.

Proof of pregnancy - copy of your second scan appointment letter, MAT B1 or the relevant pages of your maternity records.

Proof of children living with you - child benefit and/or child tax credits.

Addresses of where you have been living for the last 6 years, including dates, landlord details and reason for leaving.

Level of savings and investments - last 2 months bank statements for all accounts, annual statements for ISAs, Bonds, Annuities ect. Completion statement if sold a property within the last 12 months.

If you are a home owner, we will require an Estate Agents valuation and mortgage statement. Zoopla.co.uk or similar can be used for this. Also confirm the amount of equity you anticipate receiving once sold after you have paid off the mortgage and any secured loans.

Full details of criminal convictions - dates, sentence received.

Further details of village connections - names, addresses and nature of relation and length of time they have lived there.

If you have overnight access to children for a minimum of 2 nights per week we will require confirmation - such as a letter from main guardian confirming this or a copy of a court order if applicable.

Confirm if you owe any rent or mortgage arrears or other housing related debts. If you do, provide a letter from the landlord or mortgage provider showing outstanding mortgage, rent arrears and/or payment plan.

Photocopies of original documents are acceptable. Please do not post original documents to us as we cannot accept responsibility for the loss of them through the post or for the cost of returning them to you.

What happens if I do not provide the required documents?

Your application will not be assessed and you will not be entered onto the housing register.

How do I know if I have been accepted onto the Housing Register?

You will receive a letter confirming that you have been accepted onto the Housing Register. This will tell you your unique reference number and the housing need band you have been placed in and the size and type of property you are eligible for.

Can you refuse to accept me onto the Housing Register?

There are some people who are not eligible to be included on the Housing Register. These are:

  • Certain people who are subject to Immigration Control under the 1996 Asylum and Immigration Act.
  • Certain people from abroad who are not subject to immigration control but who are not habitually resident in the UK, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or the Republic of Ireland.

For more detailed information contact the Harborough Home Search team.

I am trying to complete an online form but the website is telling me that my details are already registered and to contact you for further information – why is this?

Your details are already held on our database, this could be because:

  • You have started to submit an online form and not completed it
  • You have been re-housed through Harborough Home Search
  • You made a previous application which was closed
  • You have previously received Housing Advice from us

Please call us on 01858 828282 and we will provide you with your login details.

How is housing need assessed?

Your application will be assessed in accordance with our Housing Allocations Policy and placed in one of 4 housing need bands.

What do I do if my circumstances change?

It is very important that you tell us of any changes in your circumstances so that we can update your application and if necessary, re-assess your housing need. We will tell you if this results in your application moving to a different band. If you move up a band your 'effective date' will be the date you move into that higher band. If you move down a band, the date used for matching to a property will be the date that applied when you were previously in that band.

What proof do I need to provide if I am pregnant?

You need to provide a copy of your second scan appointment letter, MAT B1 or the relevant pages of your maternity records. Please note your pregnancy will not count until you are 3 months from your expected due date.

Do I need to renew my application each year?

Yes, once a year, normally on the anniversary of your application you will be sent a declaration form, which you must complete and return within 28 days. If you fail to return the form we will write and tell you that your application has been cancelled.

What if someone in my household has a medical condition?

If someone in your household has a medical condition you will be asked to provide details in order for us to assess how this affects your housing need. You can continue to bid for properties but must be mindful of your condition and only bid for suitable properties such as ground floor flat or bungalow if you cannot climb stairs.

How often are properties advertised?

Properties available for rent are advertised every week. The bidding cycle starts at 12.01am each Thursday and closes at 11.59pm each Tuesday. Please note that properties are advertised during the notice period and may not be immediately available to move into.

Where are properties advertised?

Properties are advertised in the following ways:

Online at www.harborough-homes.org.uk 

In the Housing Options Booklet available at the following display/collection points.

The Council Offices (kiosk)

Market Harborough

 

 

Lutterworth

Town Council

Midland Co-op

Broughton Astley

Scraptoft Post Office

Scraptoft

Co-op Retail

Houghton on the Hill

 

Hill Court Surgery

Bushby

Ullesthorpe Stores

Ullesthorpe

Fleckney Library

 

Lutterworth Library

 

Broughton Astley Post Office

 

Broughton Astley

Primethorpe Post Office

 

Broughton Astley

Dunton Bassett Post Office

 

Dunton Bassett

Gilmorton Village Store and Post Office

Gilmorton

North Kilworth Post Office

North Kilworth

Husbands Bosworth Post Office

Husbands Bosworth

Bowden Stores

Great Bowden

Kibworth Post Office

Kibworth Beauchamp

Great Glen Post Office

Great Glen

Great Bowden Post Office

Great Bowden

Coach and Horses

 Lubenham

Spar Convenience Store

Market Harborough

Mobile Library

Routes 3 and 4

Seven Locks Housing

 

Market Harborough

Kibworth Library

(internet access only)

Kibworth

Market Harborough Library 

(Internet access only)

Great Glen Library

(Internet access only)

Broughton Astley Library

 

(Internet access only)

What information will the property adverts contain?

The adverts will tell you the landlord, location, number of bedrooms, rent, and other features of the property. Where available a photograph of the property or a similar house type will be provided and you will be able to access information about the local area and facilities. The advert will also tell you if there are any special requirements that the applicant must meet, such as age requirements, which home seekers may bid for the property. The icons on the advert tell you whether pets are allowed in the property, any minimum age requirement, the minimum or maximum number of occupants and other eligibility criteria which you must meet in order for you to bid on the property.  If, for example, your bedroom entitlement is different to that advertised on the property, you may not be eligible to bid for the property. 

How do I apply for a property?

You can bid in the following ways:

How many properties can I bid on?

You will be able to bid on a maximum of two properties each time properties are advertised.

How long will I have to bid for a property?

Properties will be advertised from midnight on a Thursday and you will be able to bid up until midnight the following Tuesday.

Will I know how many other people are interested in the same property?

Yes, when you bid for a property you will be told where you are in the queue. This is likely to change frequently due to other people bidding for the same property. Using this information you may decide to withdraw your bid for one property and bid for a different property for which you are higher placed in the queue. You can do this at any time before the closing date.

How do you decide who is offered a property?

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 criteria stated in the advert details for that property. The applicant at the top of the list will normally be offered the property.

I matched top for a property, what happens next?

The Landlord will normally contact the applicant who matched top within a day or two of the close of bidding to verify your circumstances.  They may do this by asking you to complete their own application form.  For more information you can refer to the Housing Options Scheme Guide which was sent to you with the letter confirming your application was made active.

If I successfully bid for a rented property, can the landlord refuse to let it to me?

You may not be invited to view the property for the following reasons:

  • You owe rent or have other housing related debts
  • You are a Council or Housing Association tenant and legal action has been taken against you because you have broken your tenancy conditions
  • You have sufficient resources to solve your own housing problems
  • You have not provided the required documentary evidence to support your application by the date given
  • Your circumstances have changed and this results in a reduction in your level of priority. 
  • You have provided incorrect or misleading information, which has resulted in your application being awarded a higher priority than it deserves.

If I am offered a property, will I be able to view it before making up my mind?

Yes. You will be given an opportunity to view the property and decide whether you would like to accept it.

How long will have I have to wait to get rehoused?

The current average time to be rehoused to a 2 bedroom house in Market Harborough and Lutterworth by housing need band is:

2 bedroom house in Market Harborough

Priority – 18 weeks

High – 6 weeks

Medium – 77 weeks

2 bedroom house in Lutterworth

Priority – 10 weeks

High – 11 weeks

Medium – 50 weeks

What if I don't like the property when I have seen it?

If you successfully bid for three suitable properties and you fail to attend three arranged viewings or you refuse three offers of tenancy, your application may be suspended form the housing register for up to six months.  You therefore need to make sure you only bid for properties you would be willing to accept a tenancy of.  If you are not familiar with the area/property you are bidding on, you can obtain more information from our website (www.harborough-homes.org.uk) by clicking on Show on Map, Show Local Services and Show full details.

How will I know what has happened to the properties advertised?

Information about homes that have been successfully let is published. We tell you the number of applicants that expressed an interest in each property, the band and the effective date of the successful applicant for each property. To see the results of properties that have been let click Recent Lets

How will this information help me?

It will give you a better idea of how popular a particular property or area is and how long you would normally have to wait. You can then decide whether to look for other types of property or areas where you may not have to wait as long.

Are carpets and appliances provided?

You will normally have to provide your own carpets and appliances.

What other options are there for housing?

Most applicants on the Housing Register will have to wait a long time for re-housing and many of those in the lower housing need bands will still have little chance of re-housing in the local area. Depending on your circumstances you may wish to consider other options such as renting in the private sector.  Interviews to discuss your housing options are available by appointment with the Housing Advice Team.

What if I become homeless?

Households who are homeless or threatened with homelessness should contact the Housing Advice Team to arrange an interview to discuss their circumstances. We will work with you to try to prevent you becoming homeless and will discuss your housing options with you. If this is unsuccessful you may be offered temporary housing. You may still express an interest in properties through Harborough Homesearch, providing your application has been accepted on the Housing Register, but in most cases it is unlikely that this will be in time to resolve your homelessness, as most applicants will have to wait a long time before being successful.

How do I request a review of a decision?

If you disagree with any of the following decisions you can request a review:

  • You are not eligible to join the housing register
  • You are not eligible for an offer
  • Your application has been cancelled other than at your own request
  • You think that you have been placed in the wrong housing need band or given the wrong effective date

To request a review you must contact Harborough Home Search within 21 days of the date you are notified of the decision and the reason for it. You may provide additional information in writing that you wish to 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.

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