Thank you for sharing your views with us. The consultation has now closed.
We'll analyse your feedback so we can identify what's inportant to local people. The outcome will help us form recommendations for changes in our social housing policies.
We then have to report these recommendations to Elected Members, as they will need to consider and agree to them before we can go ahead and make the changes. We expect to be able to do this during December 2012.
Around 28,000 families in Kirklees are currently living in social housing and the demand for homes is rising.
The term "social housing" is used to describe properties rented out by local councils and not-for-profit organisations such as registered housing to people in need.
In Kirklees, demand for social housing is greater than the number of suitable homes available. This means there aren't enough homes for everyone. We use a set of rules in our Housing Allocations Policy to decide who should get priority.
Recent changes to the law have given us new freedoms to ensure our Allocations Policy meets housing needs of people in our local area; from how we help people who are homeless to how we decide who should be given priority for a council home.
We asked for your views on the changes so we could consider this and develop our Housing Allocation Policy of the future.
We have worked closely with all our key partners, in developing the proposals for consultation and believe this joint working is critical in ensuring we end up with a housing service that is effective and efficient and continues to meet the needs of Kirklees residents.
The recommended changes will be shared with our elected members who will then make the final decision.
There are four major changes:
- Applications to the Kirklees housing register
The "housing register" is a list of people who want social housing. Anyone can apply to be on the register in Kirklees provided that they are not excluded from social housing because of immigration rules or other government legislation.
In future, we could decide to restrict who can register for housing in Kirklees to specific groups of people. We could also decide to give more priority to specific groups such as those who have served in the Armed Forces.
Our Housing Allocations Policy is the set of rules which say how housing is given, who can apply to the housing register and who will get priority for social housing in Kirklees.
We need to ensure our policy gives priority to those people with the greatest housing need.
- Dealing with homelessness
The changes to the legislation allow us to offer homeless households a tenancy in a private rented property instead of social housing. This could free up social housing for other groups.
- Tenancy changes
The length of tenancy we offer could change. Currently, a council tenancy is "for life". However, we could offer tenancies for a fixed amount of time. These are called "flexible tenancies". These changes won't affect existing tenants.
- 9 May to 29th June 2012 - consultation with members of the public and partners
- September 2012 - Summary of consultation will be provided online
- December 2012 - Elected members agree Policy
- April 2013 - Policy implemented