5 Things You Must Know About Social Housing

The very reason why the concept of social housing arose is out of the need to provide affordable housing to the poorer sections of the society. After all, the sad reality of the world is that not everyone can make thousands of pounds each week. Some have to live with very low incomes....

And if the housing sector is entirely left to the private industry alone, then the desire for profitability might have resulted in sky-high housing prices. But social housing avoids such consequences by providing low-income individuals a cheap way to sleep under a roof. Below, we look at five things you must know about social housing.

Registered Providers 
Those who provide social housing are known as registered providers or social landlords. Generally, non-commercial organizations take up this mantle as the focus in on social service and not profitability. Whatever profit they generate can be used either to maintain existing homes or for financing new housing projects. A few commercial enterprises have begun to dabble in social housing. However, the focus on affordability has kept the involvement of such commercial enterprises to a minimum.  

Strictly Regulated 

The UK government had set up the ‘Homes and Communities Agency’ for the sole purpose of regulating the social housing. The financial aspects of the registered provider are thoroughly checked to ensure that there is no misappropriation or financial fraud. The agency is also responsible for constructing new social housing projects. In January 2018, the agency was replaced by ‘Homes England’. 

Social Housing Officer

Social Housing officers are also responsible for working with homeless people, minorities, and other disadvantaged groups to determine how best to accommodate them into a home. Such officers are hired through social housing recruitment agencies who are exclusively dedicated to finding the right person for the job.

Need-Based Allocation
Social housing follows a need-based model when allocating homes to people. As such, people who make very little money and have a family dependent on them are given preference over others. Eligible residents are selected by the local council which follows a very strict allocation scheme. Some groups are given ‘reasonable preference’ by the authorities when allocating homes. These include the homeless, those who are forced to move due to medical conditions, those who live in unsanitary environments, and so on. 

The rules also make certain people ineligible for social housing. If a person hasn’t lived for too long in the area where social housing is provided, then they may be considered ineligible for the benefit. If a person has defaulted on rents while at a previous social home, then they too are considered not eligible at least until they have paid off the arrears.  

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