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SALFORD COUNCIL ADMITS HOUSING WAITING LIST APPLICANTS HAVE NO CHANCE OF BEING RE-HOUSED
 

Star date: 1st September 2015

SALFORD HOUSING LIST TO BE SLASHED BY HALF UNDER NEW POLICY

Salford Council is aiming to kick around 7,000 people off its housing waiting list under a new allocations policy which will also see children housed in towerblocks and penalties for refusing available properties.

The Council admits in a report that, due to the lack of social housing, "most applicants have little chance of ever being re-housed".

Full details here...


Salford Council's housing waiting list now has 14,194 households on its register while the number of social housing properties has totally declined over the last six years. Indeed, the Council admits that "most applicants have little chance of ever being re-housed".

However, instead of forcing more developers to provide affordable housing in their £multi-million property schemes, Salford Council is intending to kick around half of all housing list applicants off the register – to reduce it "to approximately 6,000 to 8,000".

A new Salford Allocations Policy - to be rubbed stamped by councillors next week - will see "households with no housing need or no local connection to the city" unable to register, alongside new penalties which will also kick people off the list. Meanwhile, the Council is to "re-introduce the option to re-house families in multi-storey blocks", for households with one child under ten years old.

From February 2016, people can be suspended from the list for twelve months for making a bid for a property but subsequently refusing it `with no reasonable grounds'; for not making a bid on a suitable property, and for `deliberate worsening of circumstances' in order to `meet priority categories'.

Amongst other allocation changes are a requirement for households to have lived in the city for two years before being eligible for the waiting list, and for officers to directly allocate housing to `care leavers, statutory homeless applicants and cases in medical need'. Households that are `adequately housed' will be unable to register, and those who are homeless will now be forced into private rented housing and won't be able to wait for an offer of social housing with its additional safeguards .

A proposal to introduce an income cap for those living in social housing was opposed by social landlords who wanted to `develop mixed communities which were economically sustainable' (ie more able to afford the misleading `affordable rent'), and this will be postponed for a year.

The Council report concludes that "the changes proposed are intended to make the current policy sustainable given the enormous challenges of increasing demand and reduced supply of accommodation in the city..."

...An incredible statement considering that everywhere one looks in the city there's yet another huge block of flats or houses being built. It says a lot about what kind of city Salford is becoming...


* See also previous Salford Star articles - Salford Council attacks housing waiting list policy - click here and Salford Council housing allocations consultation sham - click here


Giovanna wrote
at 11:29:15 PM on Friday, February 17, 2017
I think Mandy made a silly comment about many "unbritish people" living in council homes. Are they animals that they shouldn't be granted accommodation? I'll have you know that many of them have rights to be in the country just like you do therefore are entitled to it. anyway my complaint is, I recently placed a bid on Wednesday, as I was informed that the bidding was on a first come first serve basis, I was the first to bid and I remained at the top up until 4pm today where I was bumped off after somebody placed a bid. I am not sure how the bidding system works on Salford council but that is just UNFAIR and as it is a Friday and the bidding cycle closes on sunday, I wont be able to contact them till Monday. I am not sure that's right or fair. Can somebody please help?
 
Matthew wrote
at 9:56:01 PM on Monday, January 11, 2016
Hi Tahir, Sorry to hear your story. It is really difficult for people in your position. However, a lot of people put themselves in a bad position because they do not wish to live in a flat etc. The way the bidding system works is very strange and does require people to be ready at the drop of a hat to move, but again that is who social housing should be for people who need it. They will turn down a property because they have to go up a flight of stairs , not vulnerable people, young healthy people. Therefore I can not totally agree with your view that this clearance of the system is unfair. Lots of people on SHS just to get a house. Literally a house with a garden, this isn't fair, if you want a house with a garden work harder and buy a nice property or alternatively go on right move where many housing associations are advertising their products. If you work and want a two bedroom property it is relatively easy as the demand for them is lower with the bedroom tax. Problem is, no one in Salford is employed taking up the much needed homes for people such as yourself Problem
 
Michael F in Salford wrote
at 7:18:46 AM on Friday, September 4, 2015
Hi Tahir, thank you for sharing your information. It is sad to hear the housing problems in Salford. There is no justification for any such abuse and it must not be allowed to happen again.
 
Tahir Chakotai (Independent Housing Advocate) wrote
at 3:27:14 PM on Thursday, September 3, 2015
There are huge problems in Salford when it comes to Social Housing. The first problem is what I experienced as a Salix Tenant last year. The Salford Star printed my story on the 15th of October 2014. I am a disabled tenant, who currently lives on the 14th floor of a tower block, with a very poor lift service. I bided on two appropriate properties which were age banded for the over 55's. Obviously because I was under the age of 55 the bid was refused on both properties. However since April the 1st 2014, it is unlawful for a Social Housing Provider to stop any disabled person, regardless of age, applying for an over 55 property. This is why. If you live in a property that suits your age and not your disability, then it will cost the local council more in direct payments to support that disabled person. However if you put a disabled adult in the correct type of accommodation that suits he or she's disability, and not their age, their support costs are greatly reduced. This legislation is called "Eligibility Through Disability". Two months ago, I and my fellow Advocate had a meeting with the CEO of Salix Homes, Mr. Lee Sugden. Mr Sugden agreed that this type of banding is wrong and he would ensure that the Salford Home Search website was updated to ensure that the disabled, regardless of age, could bid on suitable properties that were age banded to the over 55's. However even though Salix Homes now runs the Salford Home Search Website, they have not changed a single thing. In fact most of their decent high demand housing is also banded for the over 55's In conclusion the disabled are not being rehoused adequately which is leading to them needing more support, and as a result, are needing more care, thus costing the local council a great deal of money. The second problem is availability and suitability of decent social housing within Salford. Despite millions being invested into Salix Homes Housing, in the way of grants from the Local Government, the housing that is being offered is still way below the decent homes standard. I was offered a property in Alexander Gardens. This is a Sheltered Scheme for the elderly and disabled. Let me tell you that it was an absolute disgrace. There were rotting windows, a kitchen that was held together by brown tape, Asbestos exposed via a badly fitted floor in the kitchen, damp to the outer wall and wiring that certainly exceeded 40 years of age. There was no signs that any major investment had ever been put into this building since it was erected. I could not believe that any Social Housing Landlord would be callus enough to put the elderly in such dire housing conditions. However I have recently seen a City West and Contour property, which was in good decorative and structural order, so if they can supply a good standard of housing, why can't Salix Homes? The next problem with Social Housing within Salford is the way in which a property is advertised. I recently applied for a house in Lower Broughton. The Salix Homes property was described as having a Wet Room, disabled access, a Stair Lift, and a lowered kitchen. It turned out that this was a complete load of rubbish. There was no stair lift, there were no ramps for my power chair at the front door, and certainly no lowered kitchen. I did challenge them, and they did offer to install what was promised, however, yet again, the property was in a dire state of disrepair. The list of problems goes on and on and on. Those who run Salix Homes, in my opinion need a lesson in customer service care. They also need to ensure the properties are in good order before giving them to members of the public. Salix Homes also need to stop discriminating against those who have been deemed vulnerable by society. Most importantly the Staff at Salix Homes needs to learn that they are running a professional housing service, and there is no place for childish "tit for tat" ethics. Most importantly we all need to ensure that good social housing stock is protected against further demolition as a result of redevelopment. We as Salfordians cannot afford to have any further Social Housing demolished. As stated within this Salford Star Article, there is not enough social housing within Salford, to cope with the local demand.
 
wrote
at 3:32:02 AM on Thursday, September 3, 2015
No wonder Labour lost the last two elections. They've been running Salford for generations and are useless they should be able to provide social housing for deserving people of the city. Maybe people will start looking at other parties in local elections next time. For too many years people of no talent have had power because they wear a Labour rosette.
 
Michael F in Salford wrote
at 11:23:58 AM on Wednesday, September 2, 2015
Ben, sorry to hear you moved away from Salford to find a family fit home. Please all, do not blame those that need homes coming here from outside. I assure you a skilled Enterprising Council would provide homes for all names on the waiting list. But it needs Action Fluidity Leadership, one that puts party politics to one side to make Salford fit for use. Will we ever get a true leader able to see the bigger picture in Salford?
 
Ben wrote
at 9:57:58 AM on Wednesday, September 2, 2015
This was the reason I moved my family out of Salford. I lived in a Salix flat for 12 years along the way I got married and had a child but NEVER got anywhere "bidding" on the Salix system. They said we had adequate housing and wouldn't be a priority. We bid on and won the flat next door (to prove a point)but where told we couldn't have it as it "wasn't a family property" so what did that make the flat we lived in !!! In the end we left Salford and it was the best decision we ever made. Both my wife & I are Salford Born and bred & proud of it but we are all much happier in our house and our child is settled and happy in school. We visit Salford to see Family and are shocked at how run down and Filthy it is rubbish all over the place all around Pendleton roundabout and the precinct, yet the Town hall building is always immaculate. Its a disgrace the way this once mighty and fine city has been ruined by the Council and its dealings.
 
Tracey wrote
at 3:29:25 AM on Wednesday, September 2, 2015
well said Mandy I was one of many kids put seven floors up in high rise when they decided to clear the so called slums I wasn't able to play out even though they put in playgrounds which were lock at 6pm at night even in the summer. When I drive through the area where I was brought up I wonder which country I am in. I heard about the couple whose children had grown up and they were being moved so unbritish people could have their house. when you have maintained a house for years and paid paid rent why should you have to move out?
 
mandy smith wrote
at 2:27:58 AM on Wednesday, September 2, 2015
I think the housing list should be for British people only, not all the people who are trying to get in this country and also Ive been round a council estate in Salford and seen many Unbritish people living on it where our own need housing should be given priority. Also putting children in high rise properties are no good for them they need to socialise with other children and play in the fresh air. The policy of where the housing list think that a couple only need a one bedroomed flat is also wrong especially if they are working and paying rent it is far too small for a couple this has been going on for the past 30 years plus . the councils need to getb their acts together and be fair to the British who were born here
 
Michael F in Felse wrote
at 12:44:58 PM on Tuesday, September 1, 2015
Shocking news - there is no reason why a guarantee home cannot be offered to the 14,194 people giving each a start date to plan towards. I want to see a Salford Council that delivers to local people not a bad Council that turns it back on responsibility.
 
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