When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Exchanging or swapping your home

You can swap your home with another tenant as long as

  • you both rent from social landlords, and
  • you've both been renting from your landlord for at least the last year.

Finding someone to swap with

You can swap homes with eligible tenants who rent their homes from

  • the Housing Executive 
  • a housing association in Northern Ireland
  • a housing association in England, Scotland or Wales
  • a council in England, Scotland or Wales.

You can find a swap partner by

  • checking on Homeswapper
  • checking swap groups on Facebook or other websites
  • asking your housing officer for help.

Applying for the exchange

You and your swap partner need to ask your individual landlords to approve the swap.  Write to your landlord letting them know

  • your name and full address
  • the name, full address and landlord of your swap partner

Your landlord can either

  • agree to the swap within 4 weeks, or
  • write to you within 42 days explaining why they are refusing permission for the swap.

Refusing permission to swap

Your landlord can refuse to let you swap if any of the following apply to you, or to the person you're swapping with

Your landlord can refuse the swap if either of the properties in the swap

  • has more rooms than the new tenant will need
  • is not suitable for the new tenant's needs
  • is adapted for someone with a disability and the new tenant doesn't need this type of property
  • is supposed to be for a certain category of person and the new tenant isn't in that category (e.g. over-55s housing).

Contact our helpline if your landlord has another reason for refusing to let you swap your home.