On 30 January, DLUHC published a consultation paper proposing
reforms to the regulations governing the allocation of council and
housing association homes. Councils are required to follow these
regulations in deciding how to allocate council homes as they
become vacant. The main proposals are:
- The introduction of a United Kingdom (UK) connection test:
applicants would have to be UK, Irish or Commonwealth citizens with
right of abode, certain Swiss or EEA citizens, or be lawfully
resident in the UK for at least 10 years.
- Introduction of other mandatory qualifications: applicants
would need to have at least 2 years local connection, household
income below a prescribed threshold, and no unspent convictions for
anti-social behaviour or terrorism offences; making false
statements about their circumstances would also disqualify
The consultation paper does not propose an income threshold
above which applicants would be barred from council housing but
invites views on what would be appropriate.
If introduced, these proposals would apply to new applicants and
to those already on waiting lists, but not to existing tenants.
Existing tenants will, however, be affected by the proposal to
introduce new grounds for eviction for terrorism offences, and
implementation of a 'three strikes and you're out' policy for
The consultation closes on 26 March. ARCH will be submitting a
response and would like to hear member authorities' views on the
proposals. Please send comments to ARCH Policy Adviser Matthew
by 18 March.