Choice based Lettings FAQs

The following questions and answers are frequently asked regarding Choice Based Lettings in Broxbourne.

#How many and what type of properties does the Council have to let?

#How do I bid for properties?

#When does bidding open and close?

#How many expressions of interest can I make in a fortnightly cycle?

#Where can I get copies of the list advertising empty properties?

#Can I change my mind about an expression of interest I have made?

#How will I know if I have been successful?

#Would I be more at an advantage if I made an expression of interest using the internet as opposed to by phone or post?

#I do not have a computer but would like to participate using the internet

#I may need support in making an expression of interest, where can I get help?

#How do I do a mutual exchange?

#How can I find out about shared ownership?

How many and what type of properties does the Council have to let?

The number and type of properties available to let varies greatly every cycle. You can check on the HomeOption website to see current property type and availability. In general, there tend to be more one and two bed properties available (usually flats) than three or more bed properties.

How do I bid for properties?

Once your housing register application had been processed by Broxbourne Council, you will be sent a letter which will tell you how to register your interest in properties through a HomeOption account. To log on, go to the HomeOption website, input your housing register reference number and then follow the on screen instructions to access a welcome pack and user guide that explains how to bid for properties in full detail. The vast majority of people prefer using the website to bid for properties because they can see what they are entitled to, but you can also register interest by:

  • Telephone on 08707 270460
  • Text on 07781 472726

Follow the user guide in the welcome pack to find out how to bid for properties through these methods. If you do not have a welcome pack, please contact the Council.

When does bidding open and close?

Bidding opens every other Friday at 9am and closes at 1pm the following Wednesday.

How many expressions of interest can I make in a fortnightly cycle?

Each applicant can make an expression of interest for up to three properties per fortnight.

Where can I get copies of the list advertising empty properties?

The lists will be available at:

  • Council One Stop Shops
  • Bishops' College
  • Copies can also be downloaded by going to the HomeOption website

Can I change my mind about an expression of interest I have made?

Yes, you can change your mind about a bid you have made, but you must do this before the cycle closes. The user guide on your HomeOption account will explain this process to you.

How will I know if I have been successful?

If your expression of interest in a property has been successful we will contact you and may arrange to visit you in your home to verify your circumstances. If you do not hear from us then your choices have not been successful. To ensure confidentiality, details by points of the successful bidder will be stated in the feedback section in the freesheet for the next bidding cycle.

Would I be more at an advantage if I made an expression of interest using the internet as opposed to by phone or post?

No, the method you choose to express an interest will not influence who is successful or unsuccessful. Equally, whether you express an interest on the first or last day of the cycle, this will not put you at an advantage or a disadvantage.

I do not have a computer but would like to participate using the internet

To ensure everyone who is entitled to bid has a fair and equal opportunity to do so, the Council has installed computers in One Stop Shops, and the reception area at Bishops' College to allow expressions of interest under CBL to be made. In addition, staff will be on hand to provide assistance.

I may need support in making an expression of interest, where can I get help?

We will make arrangements to ensure that you are not disadvantaged by CBL if you need support. We will ensure that you can register your interest in a variety of ways and we will be working with other organisations to ensure that the support you require is available and free.

How do I do a mutual exchange?

A mutual exchange is a scheme through which two social tenants permanently exchange properties with each other. Most social tenants sign up for a mutual exchange through the HomeSwapper website. 

HomeSwapper is available for a minimal fee.  However, if your landlord is registered with HomeSwapper, the service is free. It is a straightforward process requiring some paperwork and consultation with your landlord. To find out more, speak to your landlord or visit the website.

How can I find out about shared ownership?

Shared ownership is a government backed scheme through which working people can buy part of a new flat or house and pay a smaller rent on the rest of the property. The idea is that the monthly mortgage and rent payments will be lower or equal to the normal rent of the new property per month. Over time the tenant will have the option to buy a larger share of the property or the whole house/flat. Other products of this type are also available.

To find out more, visit the BPHA website.

If you require any further information or need a user guide in another language, large print or a different format, please contact the Council's housing needs section by phone on 01992 785505 or e-mail housingneeds@broxbourne.gov.uk.