Housing Allocations Scheme FAQs

Do I have to be a Camden resident to apply?

If I do not qualify for the housing register what help is available to find housing?

What is the application process?

Can I be on more than one housing application?

What if I need help completing an application?

What are the exemptions from the 5 out of 7 year residence qualification?

How do you assess whether I am overcrowded?

What qualifies as a disrepair issue?

What is a regeneration scheme?

What are the exemptions to having household savings or financial assets over £32,000?

What are the exemptions to having rent arrears?

What is the “direct offers matrix”?

How many points do I need?

Do I have to be a Camden resident to apply? - You will need to show that you have lived in Camden for five out of the last seven years before you can join the new housing register. There are some exceptions to this rule, for example for young people placed in care outside of our borough.

If I do not qualify for the new housing register what help is available to find housing? - Visit Housing Options for details of what advice is available. You can also speak to a housing adviser about your options. We can also advise you on how to keep your current home if you have been asked to leave. 

What is the application process? - Applications are made via an online form. Applicants can quickly and easily see whether they are likely to qualify and decide whether to complete a full application, which can take up to 30 minutes. Where a full application has been completed the screen will give brief, initial advice as to whether the application is likely to qualify. Where the application does not qualify this will be confirmed in writing and the letter will explain the reasons, advise where information about other housing options can be found and what the applicant can to do if they disagree with the decision. Where the application does appear to qualify the council will contact the applicant to verify the application, provide appropriate advice and assistance and either enable the application to be included on the housing register and enabled to bid, or closed down.

Can I be on more than one housing application? - The scheme does not allow an individual to appear on more than one application.  

What if I need help completing an application? - You could ask a friend or family member to help you update your application. Free internet access is also available for residents at all Camden libraries. Please contact us for further advice on 020 7974 4444. 

What are the exemptions from the 5 out of 7 year residence qualification? - If you have been placed in accommodation outside the borough by the council, such as temporary homeless accommodation or residential care. If you are fleeing violence or harassment. If the council needs you to move because we are redeveloping or repairing your home, or you are under-occupying and wish to downsize. If you are working with the housing options service to prevent your homelessness. If you need to move because you are fostering a Camden child or to provide or receive extensive care. You are moving on from supported housing and cannot move into private rented housing. You are a former member of the armed forces. You have a council tenancy elsewhere but need to move for employment.

How do you assess whether I am overcrowded? - You will be assessed as overcrowded if you have the same, or fewer, rooms in your home available for sleeping, including the living room, as your bedroom need. We assess your bedroom need as follows:

Step 1: One bedroom for you, and partner/spouse (if any)
Step 2: One bedroom for any additional adult couple
Step 3: One bedroom for any two additional people of the same sex
Step 4: One bedroom for any two additional people of the opposite sex aged nine and under
Step 5: One bedroom for any additional person.

What qualifies as a disrepair issue? - If your privately rented home has been assessed as having disrepair hazards which could seriously affect your health or wellbeing, or is uninhabitable. Camden council tenants may need to move if repairs cannot be done with them living there.

What is a regeneration scheme? - A Camden Council redevelopment project which requires tenants to move because their home is being demolished or improved. For further information on regeneration schemes please visit our Community Investment Programme pages.

What are the exemptions to having household savings or financial assets over £32,000? - There are limited exemptions to this – those who qualify for extra care sheltered housing, those who need a fully adapted home which is not available in the private sector and those who are downsizing or need to move for redevelopment will not be excluded from applying because of their assets.

What are the exemptions to being disqualified for having rent arrears? - If you are keeping to an agreement to reduce your arrears, or are moving to a more affordable home, or to a smaller home and may qualify for a payment which would reduce or clear your arrears, or you need to move because of harassment or violence or because your present home requires substantial essential repairs, you will not be excluded from applying because you are in rent arrears.

What is the “direct offers matrix”? – Sometimes we advertise a home that not many people bid for, or we may go through two shortlists of bidders but find no-one wants the property. Rather than allow the home to lie empty we can instead use that home to make an applicant in housing need a direct offer. The matrix sets out how we decide who to make this kind of direct offer to and it is found at the end of the full scheme.

How many points do I need? – The number of points needed for a home depends on the size of the home, the number of people that bid for the home, the points level of the bidders and many other factors. We cannot tell you how many points you will need, but we can advise you on the average points that successful bidders have had for homes of different sizes over a recent period. See how many points successful bidders have.

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