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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Social housing

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

Your landlord can only end your tenancy by following the correct process. Secure Housing Executive and housing association tenants can only be evicted if a court believes that they have broken the tenancy agreements. It's easier for a landlord to evict an introductory tenant, but the landlord still has to get a court order. Think carefully and get advice before you take any action to end your tenancy. It can be difficult to get a new social tenancy if you've given one up.

You'll probably wait a long time for an offer if your points are low. There are a couple of things you can try to speed up the process. You could change your areas of choice to an area with less demand or you could look at the properties available on the Housing Executive's Choice Based Lettings scheme.

Your responsibilities are set out in your tenancy agreement and tenant handbook. There are certain things you must do. If you don’t, your housing association could take steps to end your tenancy.

Secure Housing Executive (NIHE) and housing association tenants can apply for a transfer to a different NIHE or housing association property. You can ask for a transfer anywhere in the UK and tenants from England, Scotland & Wales can transfer to properties in Northern Ireland.

Social housing is housing owned by either the Northern Ireland Housing Executive or housing associations. The Housing Selection Scheme is the list of rules that the Housing Executive and housing associations use when deciding who they should offer this housing to.

You’ll be responsible for dealing with many of the repairing issues in your home. Tenants are responsible for decorating the inside of the property, including carpeting and flooring and you’ll also be responsible for looking after your garden. Your landlord will usually deal with any structural problems or faults with the heating, plumbing and electrical systems.

You can sell your home on if you bought it from the Housing Executive or a housing association. However, if you got a discount on the purchase price you might have to pay this back.

Asylum seekers can’t usually apply for social housing, and some other people can also be prevented from applying. If you, or someone who is part of your application has done certain things in the last 2 years, like been evicted, abandoned a property, owed rent or lied on an application form, you can be disqualified from applying.

The amount of time you'll have to wait for an offer of housing will normally depend on where you want to live and how many points you have.  Points can be confusing.  This information should help you understand how the system works.

Some people won't ever get enough points for an offer.  If you're in this position you'll need to think about other housing options, like renting privately or making your current home more suitable.

You can buy all or part of your home. Regardless of how much of the property you buy, you will become responsible for all repairs and maintenance on the property once the sale has completed.

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