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Jan 28 2013

Harrow Council Want your Views on Housing Changes

harrow_council_logoPeople can have their final say on a number of housing changes designed to increase the supply of affordable housing and make sure those with the greatest housing need come first. Harrow Council has launched a consultation on a number of proposals, which will change the way it allocates housing, deals with homelessness and works with the private sector. These have been developed from extensive consultation with residents in 2011-12.

They include:

  • Changes to how social housing is allocated. This will reduce waiting times for some people including those with low paid jobs, households who are overcrowded by two or more bedrooms and people who have a severe medical or welfare reason to move. To achieve this, other people won’t be housed by the council, but will be given advice or assistance to find alternative housing for themselves. This includes applicants only overcrowded by one bedroom, and households who are overcrowded because they include family members aged 21 or over.
  • Helping applicants with less urgent needs to look at alternative options, such as private sector housing. We will be working with private landlords to make this process easier and more secure. We want to continue focusing on what the Council can do to obtain good quality private rented housing and make this process easier for all parties involved. We will continue working in partnership with landlords, developers, private tenants and other boroughs to increase supply and improve quality.
  • Meeting the long term needs of housing applicants. Should we consider a move outside of Harrow or London where this will best meet the long term housing needs of the household? This is something the Council already does for a small number of residents on a voluntary basis and we want people’s views on whether it is something we should explore further.

We are asking for your views in order to help deal with rising housing costs and an increased demand for housing, resulting from welfare reforms the Government is introducing.

Historically, Harrow has one of the smallest social housing stocks in London , just 10 per cent of homes in the borough. The Council needs to ensure that its priority residents are looked after first and that it makes the best use of the housing stock it has.

Harrow Council Portfolio Holder for Housing, Cllr Bob Currie, said: “A number of factors, including the introduction of the benefit cap later this year, will mean there will be an increasing number of people who need affordable housing. We have to find a way of meeting this challenge and it is very important that residents have their say. We want to know what people think about the changes we are proposing, so that we can be sure they are the right changes to make.”

Paddy Lyne, Chairman of Harrow Federation of Tenants and Residents Association (HFTRA) said: “These changes will make a difference to people’s lives and people should not ignore the chance to take part in this consultation. It is important to stand up and be counted and let the Council know what you think. Many people will not have known changes like this before. HFTRA will try and involve as many people as it can and will be encouraging as many tenants and leaseholders as possible to have their say, as well as representing the views of those who will be affected.”

To take part in the consultation and for more information log onto: www.harrow.gov.uk/housingchanges, call 020 8416 8623 or email housingchanges@harrow.gov.uk .

It will run until midday on Wednesday, 27th February 2013.

Source: Harrow Council

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2 comments

  1. John Clement

    Do not ruin the landscape by cramming in more housing. Housing asociations which are based in Brent like stadium housing should house their undesirables in Brent.

  2. John Clement

    The one thing most damaging to the world is over population. Take steps to ensure responsible attitudes to familly planting rather than by destroying the planet and the environment. There are too many people for too few resources. This is true for Harrow services. So only build housing for those who have or will make a contribution to society & the community.

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