Localism and tenancies <ul><li>A round up of some changes in the law which will impact on tenants </li></ul><ul><li>Yvonne...
Changes in the law <ul><li>Tenancy reform in localism bill: </li></ul><ul><li>Tenure </li></ul><ul><li>Allocations </li></...
Tenure <ul><li>Local housing authorities are to  publish a tenancy strategy  </li></ul><ul><li>The creation of a new flexi...
Tenure (2) <ul><li>Social landlords have to publish and maintain a clear and accessible tenancy policy with certain mandat...
Tenure – what does it mean for you? <ul><li>Existing tenants retain their right of security,  including in most cases on m...
Allocations <ul><li>It allows local authorities to restrict access to their statutory allocation scheme, and to exclude ex...
Mobility <ul><li>The government plans to go ahead with proposals for a national home swap scheme </li></ul><ul><li>A new r...
Mobility (2) <ul><li>The Chartered Institute of Housing will work with landlords  to produce a service level agreement tha...
Homelessness <ul><li>This allows local authorities to discharge their homelessness duties through an offer of a privately ...
Overcrowding and under-occupation <ul><li>The government says that the reforms to tenure, allocations and homelessness in ...
The Protections of Freedoms Bill <ul><li>The main elements which impact on tenants include: </li></ul><ul><li>Unable to us...
Affordable rents <ul><li>A new Affordable rent tenancy will be offered by Housing Associations from April 2011 </li></ul><...
New tenants power of scrutiny <ul><li>The Localism bill  will incorporate the powers to close the TSA: </li></ul><ul><li>W...
Where can I read the full reports <ul><li>Local decisions: next steps towards a fairer future for social housing </li></ul...
Thanks for listening -any questions? <ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Tel: 07867 974659 </li></ul><ul><li>[email_...
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Localism and changes in the law

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Localism and changes in the law

  1. 1. Localism and tenancies <ul><li>A round up of some changes in the law which will impact on tenants </li></ul><ul><li>Yvonne Davies </li></ul><ul><li>11 th March 2011 </li></ul>
  2. 2. Changes in the law <ul><li>Tenancy reform in localism bill: </li></ul><ul><li>Tenure </li></ul><ul><li>Allocations </li></ul><ul><li>Mobility </li></ul><ul><li>Homelessness </li></ul><ul><li>Overcrowding and under- occupation </li></ul><ul><li>Other laws: </li></ul><ul><li>Freedom – CCTV and wheel-clamping </li></ul><ul><li>New tenants power of scrutiny </li></ul><ul><li>Affordable rents </li></ul>
  3. 3. Tenure <ul><li>Local housing authorities are to publish a tenancy strategy </li></ul><ul><li>The creation of a new flexible tenancy for local authority landlords with a minimum fixed term of two years.  The government plans to retain two-year tenancies as an option whilst saying it expects the majority of tenancies to be for longer terms, especially for vulnerable households and those with children. </li></ul><ul><li>A new tenancy standard will be introduced from April 2012 (not to be confused with the current TSA Tenancy Standards) </li></ul>
  4. 4. Tenure (2) <ul><li>Social landlords have to publish and maintain a clear and accessible tenancy policy with certain mandatory elements, including: </li></ul><ul><li>the type of tenancies they will grant </li></ul><ul><li>the circumstances that decide on the type of tenancy offered; </li></ul><ul><li>rights of appeal; </li></ul><ul><li>grounds on which a decision to renew a tenancy will be made; </li></ul><ul><li>provisions for the vulnerable; </li></ul><ul><li>advice and assistance to be offered to those not granted another tenancy and details of when discretionary succession will be allowed. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Tenure – what does it mean for you? <ul><li>Existing tenants retain their right of security, including in most cases on mutual exchange with a fixed terms tenants </li></ul><ul><li>The 2 year tenancies are available to local authorities to assist waiting list issues </li></ul><ul><li>The government expects most tenancies to be long term, particularly for vulnerable people and those with children </li></ul><ul><li>The 2 years start at the end of any probationary tenancy period </li></ul><ul><li>Changes to come in on 31 st March 2010 </li></ul>
  6. 6. Allocations <ul><li>It allows local authorities to restrict access to their statutory allocation scheme, and to exclude existing council and housing association tenants unless they have reasonable preference. </li></ul><ul><li>The government currently does not plan to make any changes to the existing statutory ‘reasonable preference’ (Priority Housing groups) categories which determine who has priority for social housing. </li></ul><ul><li>Landlords will not be forced to set up a separate system  for transfer requests, but have the freedom to make arrangements that best suit the needs of the local area. </li></ul><ul><li>Appeals on priority will remain </li></ul>
  7. 7. Mobility <ul><li>The government plans to go ahead with proposals for a national home swap scheme </li></ul><ul><li>A new regulatory standard governing services to support mutual exchange which all landlords to subscribe to an internet-based service that is free to tenants. </li></ul><ul><li>The landlord must chose a scheme that shares exchange property details with other schemes, or else participate in a range of different schemes. </li></ul><ul><li>The landlord's preferred exchange service will tenants with suggested matches and a clickable link to other service providers for further matches. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Mobility (2) <ul><li>The Chartered Institute of Housing will work with landlords to produce a service level agreement that defines minimum technical, information and security provisions for data sharing. </li></ul><ul><li>Landlords will be expected to publicise the exchange scheme to its tenants and assist the “digitally excluded”. </li></ul><ul><li>The government favours a payment by results model for exchange services and will fund a series of projects to trial various approaches. (Details will be announced in the spring). </li></ul>
  9. 9. Homelessness <ul><li>This allows local authorities to discharge their homelessness duties through an offer of a privately rented home. </li></ul><ul><li>Homes offered must be “suitable” and within the LA boundary: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Affordable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Size, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Condition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accessible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Location </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Must be for at least 12 months </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The homeless duty reoccurs if the persons, through no fault of their own become homeless again within 2 years </li></ul>
  10. 10. Overcrowding and under-occupation <ul><li>The government says that the reforms to tenure, allocations and homelessness in the Localism Bill will help tackle overcrowding. </li></ul><ul><li>It has £13 million to the 50 biggest local authority landlords to tackle under-occupation and intends establishing a new national team of advisers based at the Chartered Institute of Housing to support councils who want to help tenants to downsize, for example: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>dedicated officers to help find residents suitable new homes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>a moving service to assist tenants with every aspect of moving </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>handymen to decorate and make repairs to new homes </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. The Protections of Freedoms Bill <ul><li>The main elements which impact on tenants include: </li></ul><ul><li>Unable to use covert video monitoring for low level offences </li></ul><ul><li>Need approval by a magistrate to use covert video </li></ul><ul><li>Scaling back Criminal Records Bureau checks for officers </li></ul><ul><li>Powers of Entry will be reviewed (16 relate to housing acts and many more for gas safety) </li></ul><ul><li>Prohibition of wheel clamping on private land. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No impact on local authorities on public land </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Will apply to Housing Associations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Landlords may to rethink parking controls </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Affordable rents <ul><li>A new Affordable rent tenancy will be offered by Housing Associations from April 2011 </li></ul><ul><li>Tenancies will be fixed term tenancies at a higher social rent, but no more than 80% of market rents </li></ul><ul><li>Housing Associations are encouraged to charge these rents to new tenants to raise funds to build new homes </li></ul>
  13. 13. New tenants power of scrutiny <ul><li>The Localism bill will incorporate the powers to close the TSA: </li></ul><ul><li>With strengthened powers through tenant panels to scrutinise services </li></ul><ul><li>( More on that later from Linda & Graeme ) </li></ul><ul><li>With strengthened powers for tenants to be involved in resolving disputes/complaints </li></ul><ul><li>( More on that later from Linda ) </li></ul>
  14. 14. Where can I read the full reports <ul><li>Local decisions: next steps towards a fairer future for social housing </li></ul><ul><li>www.communities.gov.uk/publications/housing/localdecisionsresponse </li></ul><ul><li>Protection of freedoms Bill </li></ul><ul><li>http:// services.parliament.uk/bills/2010-11/protectionoffreedoms.html </li></ul>
  15. 15. Thanks for listening -any questions? <ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Tel: 07867 974659 </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Tel: 07967 342436 </li></ul><ul><li>www.tenantadvisor.net </li></ul>

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