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Affordable Housing In Malpas

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Obtaining Affordable Rented Housing in Malpas


Introduction
There are over 20 affordable homes yet to be built in Malpas which will be a mix of lowcost home ownership and rented properties.

Allocation of rental properties is through the Housing Register operated by West CheshireHomes under the Council's Housing Allocations Policy which was adopted in April 2021.

What is Affordable Housing?
Affordable housing is for households who are unable to afford to buy or rent a market valued property.
There are currently five different types:

  • Social rent – existing Council or Housing Association rented property.
  • Affordable rent – new rented properties at a maximum 80% of market value rents.
  • Discount for Sale/First Homes – new homes for sale at a capped value.
  • Shared ownership – part buy, part rent from a Housing Association.
  • Rent to Buy – new homes to rent from a Housing Association fora set period of time at an affordable rent (80% of a market rent) with the option to purchase the property at a market value.

For more information on the different types of affordable housing in Cheshire West, eligibility and how to apply visit: Types of affordable housing
.

West Cheshire Homes Housing Allocations Policy:
West Cheshire Homes operate a choice based lettings scheme where applicants bid for
advertised properties.

You can browse on the West Cheshire Homes websiteto see which properties are available to bid on and for more advice on housing options.

The Housing Allocations Policy is a detailed document that contains the rules and guidelines on how affordable rental homesare allocated to people.

A copy of this document can be obtained using the following link: Allocations Policy

The West Cheshire Homes Allocations Policy has recently been updated, with a new applicant banding system and advertising/bidding process, to ensure households in the most need are prioritised.

Earlier in the year all applicants already on the Housing Register were contacted so they could be reassessed under the new system.

How Can I get an Affordable Home?
If you are interested in obtaining a rented affordable property (this includes housing association, social housing and "council houses") and think you are eligible under the new Housing Allocations Policy, then you need to register now with West Cheshire Homes using this link: Housing Register Application Form

You have to register and complete an application if you want to bid for properties.

Further information on how to apply, the allocations processand frequently asked questions are available on the West Cheshire Homes webpages: West Cheshire Homes help

For enquiries about buying a low cost affordable home, please contact the site office for any new developments or go to the Council's Affordable Housing web pages which also contain information on resales too: How to buy a low cost affordable home

Allocation Myths

There are a number of common myths around the allocation of affordable houses in Malpas.

Allocations for affordable rented accommodation are made to households who meet the eligibility criteria and are prioritised to those in greatest housing need in accordance with the Allocations Policy.

On average across the borough there are 30-40 applicants chasing each West Cheshire Homes vacancy, so many will lose out and therefore will need to find alternative accommodation.

Myth:
I have a right to be housed in Malpas in affordable housing, because I live in privately rented housing currently.

Fact:
To bid for affordable rented homes:

  • households must be in an acute housing need
  • you must be able to demonstrate that you are about to be made homeless by your land or
  • your current home is not suitable due to a severe medical condition
  • you are overcrowded and require at least two additional bedrooms
  • or the property is in serious disrepair which your landlord is not addressing the problems

Often people who are in private rented accommodation are deemed by West Cheshire Homes to be adequately housed.

Myth:
Single people or a couple with no children are eligible for a 3 bedroom house.
Fact:
Household bedrooms need is assessed using the Bedroom Standard, so it is unlikely a single person or couple who only require one bedroom would be able to bid for a 3 bedroom property unless there were exceptional circumstances.
A summary of the Bedroom Standard is given below.
Taking into account national space standards, one bedroom is needed for each:

  • Single adult or couple
  • Two children under 10 regardless of gender
  • Two children under 16 of same gender
  • Other adults living in the household
  • Where an applicant, or member of their household, is expecting a child and this grants the need for an additional bedroom
  • Consideration is also be made where a separate room is required for the use and/or storage of medical equipment, where a disabled person needs an overnight carer.

Myth:
Priority is given to those individuals who have been born in the village.
Fact:
To bid for homes on the Housing Register you must have local connection to Cheshire West and Chester or be a member/recently discharged member of the armed forces.

Local connection means:

  • that you currently live in the borough and have done so for at least 2 years;
  • or have a close family connection (mother, father, brother, sister, children) who have lived in the borough for at least 5 years or you work in the borough.

There are a few properties where priority is given to households with a local connection to Malpas, these requirements will be clearly stated in the property advert.

Myth:
At a Pre-tenancy assessment meeting with a Housing Association you are offered / guaranteed a home.
Fact:
The meeting is an opportunity for the applicant and registered provider to ask questions to determine suitability for allocation.
It should not be assumed that if you attend such a meeting that you will get a property.

If you wish to discuss any of this information further please contact either:

Councillor Chris Whitehurst on 01948 860333 or
Councillor Rachel Williams on 01948 860627.

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