The Housing Executive and most housing associations use the same Housing And Transfer Application Form. The Housing Executive will assess you and place you on the waiting list in less than 28 days. The length of time you wait for a house depends on your circumstances.
General rules of the selection scheme
Both the Housing Executive and most housing associations use the Selection Scheme to decide who gets permanent accommodation. Most people in Northern Ireland can apply for permanent accommodation from the Housing Executive or a housing association. If you are over 18, live in Northern Ireland and are not seeking asylum here, you will usually be allowed to apply.
The Housing Executive assesses every person who applies for housing. You will be assessed by the Housing Executive even if you have applied to live in a housing association property.
Who can I get accommodation from?
Your application is given to the Housing Executive and all the housing associations in your chosen areas unless you state on the application that you don't want to be housed by a specific landlord. For example, you have to state that you do not want permanent accommodation from the Housing Executive.
Fill in the form carefully, you are responsible for making sure that the information is correct. You can be evicted if you are given a house based on incorrect information.
Can I choose where I live?
When applying you select two areas where you want to live. You can also choose which landlords you want to be housed by in these areas. You can also select a wider General Housing Area (GHA) which includes more estates and landlords.
If the Housing Executive decides you are legally homeless (a Full Duty Applicant) you will be offered accommodation in your areas of choice for the first six months. After six months you will receive offers from landlords in the General Housing Area.
How long will it take?
The Housing Executive will acknowledge your application within three working days. Within 14 days the Housing Executive will come out to your home to carry out an assessment. You will receive the results of the assessment within a week.
Your name goes on the waiting list for permanent accommodation. The length of time you spend on the waiting list depends on the number of points you are given and the areas you selected on the Housing and Transfer Application Form. You must complete a renewal form every year if you wish to stay on the waiting list.
You can get advice on applying for permanent accommodation in Northern Ireland from Housing Rights Service.
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