We have completed our review of our Allocations Policy and, in line, with our Communications Strategy and Tenant Participation Policy, we now invite you to share your views as a tenant, member, applicant or other stakeholder.
Background to the Policy
Our Allocations Policy was first introduced in June 2007 and sets out the criteria for letting our properties. It is a points-based policy where applicants are awarded points based on their individual or family circumstances. These points are then added up and an applicant is placed on one of housing lists’. When our properties become vacant applicants are then considered for housing depending on their circumstances and preferences as noted within their application form.
Background to our Application Process
Anyone can apply for housing at West Whitlawburn Housing Co-operative. We operate a points-based system where points are allocated according to the criteria set out in the Allocations Policy. All applicants complete our standard application form and an additional medical assessment form if required. The forms are assessed by our staff and verified or backed up with professional information submitted by the applicant. We currently operate two lists; housing and internal transfers and we also take referrals from South Lanarkshire Council (SLC) – our Local Authority.
Past and present Turnover and Allocations performance
Each year we complete an Annual Return on the Charter (ARC for short) and submit this to the Scottish Housing Regulator. Previous performance statistics are shown below:
|Number of re-lets
Who does this policy affect?
This policy affects all of our tenants, members, prospective tenants, applicants and other stakeholders. We encourage everyone with an interest in the organisation to share their views by responding to the consultation.
What have we done so far to review this policy?
The review commenced in 2019/20 where the majority of the research and review work took place however, due to the Covid-19 pandemic the process was placed on hold throughout 2021 and 2022.
In April 2022 our services fully resumed and we planned to transition to a cloud-based housing management system. With this in mind, the process was recommenced in June 2023 with the creation of the Allocations Working Party – formed by members of our Management Committee and staff. This group was formed to maintain good practice within the policy, review up-to-date allocations data, improve service delivery and discuss further changes, if any, that could be made. So far this year, the Allocations Working Party has met four times. A timeline of these meetings and summary of the items discussed is as follows:
22nd June 2023: Members discussed the background of the policy and reviewed each clause to highlight areas for clarification or change. Target implementation dates were set and further actions to reassess quotas, internal policies and all applications and medical forms were agreed.
3rd August 2023: Amendments to the policy were made to reflect joint working agreements and policies. Members agreed that all tenants and applicants would be invited to respond to the consultation as well as other SLC stakeholders and representatives.
9th November 2023: Proposed amendments to policy were outlined and agreed unanimously. Addition of up to 14 days to transfer within stock and addition of delegated authority for exceptional circumstances.
Throughout all of the above, staff and Committee continuously reviewed reporting data to ensure that the proposed policy was amended in line with our current organisational activities.
On the 13th of November 2023, the proposed policy was presented to the Performance, Assurance and Risk Sub-Committee by the Head of Housing Services. The Committee considered the updated policy and approved it for a full consultation.
What are the main changes to the policy?
The main changes to the policy are as follows:
- Reduction from 4 medical priority categories to 3 (high, medium and low);
- Amendment of lacking amenities breakdown points to a Below Tolerable Standard one-off award;
- Overcrowding sharing amenities (close and non-close family members) was replaced by insecurity of tenure;
- Change in occupancy standards;
- Access to children – previous award related to per bedroom shortage, amended to one-off award;
- Creation of up to 14 days rent-free period to allow tenants to transfer within our stock;
- We have clarified the position regarding application suspensions and relevant timescales;
- We have clarified the social points awards;
- Creation of delegated authority for exceptional circumstances lets (this would be considered in extraordinary instances including bed blocking where an adapted property is identified as becoming available).
Taking part in the consultation and completing the survey
We welcome all of our tenants’, applicants and other stakeholders’ views in this consultation. We recognise that tenant participation is one of the fundamental values to the Co-operative and encourage a wide range of methods to participate.
To take part, we recommend that you read this consultation in full and the policies linked below. Once you have considered the proposal please respond to the consultation using the link below (Our current tenants and applicants will have a link sent to them directly – you can respond using this method too).
If you have any questions regarding the policy or consultation please contact the Housing Services team by one of the following methods:
Telephone: 0141 641 8628
In-person: Call into our office and a member of staff can assist you.
Link to complete the consultation survey: https://cxfb.co.uk/sc/8A0E2D11/8C0E2419
The consultation will take place between 1st December 2023 and 15th January 2024. After this date the link above will close, the data will be reviewed and a final report will be presented to the Management Committee at the end of January 2024. We will publish the outcome of the consultation as soon as possible after this date.
We will provide this consultation on request at no cost, in larger print, in Braille, in audio or other non-written format, and in a variety of languages. Please contact the office.
*Edited 14/02/2024* Allocations Policy Consultation Outcome.
Please view the file below for the policy review outcome: