With the Locata scheme, it will not be the Council or Housing Association who will find and allocate you a home; instead you look for your own home by viewing the adverts on www.locata.org.uk
There are five steps for you to follow in choosing your new home:
Step 1 – Membership
You are automatically a member of Locata if you are an existing tenant of any of the participating
Councils or Housing Associations and have registered for a Transfer or if you are a Homeseeker.
This includes homeless people and others on the Housing Register of participating Councils and Housing Associations.
You may not be eligible to be on the housing register; your council your council can give you further advice on this.
Step 2 – Registration
Once your Council or Housing Association has accepted you onto their register, Locata will write to you to give you a Locata Identification Number (LIN number) and will tell you which band (A, B, C or D, or 1, 2, 3) you have been placed in and your priority date. Follow the link for details of how the priority band and date system works.
You must keep your Housing Office informed of any changes to your household, medical condition or housing situation.
This is very important as it could result in changing your band, or your eligibility for certain homes. Follow the link for details of how the priority band and date system works.
Step 3 – Choosing
Available properties are advertised on our website www.locata.org.uk
The adverts give you information about each property available for letting.
You can ‘bid’ for up to 3 properties that you are eligible for.
Before you bid, check out the location of the property on the map to make sure it’s really a place you would consider moving to. Much landlord time is wasted trying to contact bidders who don’t attend viewings because they don’t really want to go to that area.
We apply special rules to some properties. Make sure you read the advert carefully as we may state that priority will be given to certain types of bidders.
You can bid in any of 3 ways:
• Online The easiest way to bid is on www.locata.org You can logon with your LIN and birth date. You can see a record that you have placed your bid, and you can track the process online.
• By telephone Call 0906 294 2012 and follow the instructions
• By text Call 07781 472 726
Available properties will be advertised on www.locata.org.uk every Thursday at 12:00pm noon. Your bids must reach us by 4pm on the following Monday. Properties are not allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, your bid will be considered in the same way regardless of when during the bidding period we receive your bid.
Step 4 – Offer
All bids received for each property advertised are put in priority order to produce a list of eligible members for each property.
The landlord of each property allocates from the list after doing further eligibility checks. If your name is at the top of the priority list, you will normally be invited to view the property.
You may not automatically be penalised for refusing properties you have chosen, although measures might be taken if you refuse several properties, especially if you are in a high ‘priority band’ and need to move urgently. In these circumstances you will be advised that you may be penalised for refusing a property.
Many landlords invite more than one member to view their properties at the same time, although the property is always offered first to the member with the highest priority who attends the viewing.
If you are at the top of more than one list, the landlord will decide which property to offer you and the other properties will be offered elsewhere.
Any offer is subject to your application being verified. If you are not verified, the offer may be made to another applicant.
Circumstances where you may not be invited to view or be offered a property:
• You are in rent arrears
• You have been involved in anti-social behaviour
• You have enough money or income to afford a property in the private sector
• You have not provided information requested by your landlord or housing office
• You can ask your Local Council or Landlord if any of these circumstances apply to you. You can also ask them to review their decision to exclude you from the scheme at any time.
It is very important that you attend viewings that you are invited to. If you agree to attend a viewing, but find you cannot attend, please let your landlord know that you can’t attend.
Step 5 – Feedback
Most properties are listed on the website www.locata.org.uk once they are let.
The feedback tells you how many people bid for each property, as well as the band and registration date of the successful bidder.
This helps you to see how long the successful bidders have been waiting.
You can check our website www.locata.org.uk to track the progress of the letting of the property.
People who have come top of a shortlist are usually contacted within a week of the bidding closing. However, a lot of properties are advertised some time before they are ready for occupation.
If a person who was top of the list refuses, the next person who was on the list may be invited to view some weeks after the closing date.
If you have questions about how the scheme applies to you or about bidding for properties, there are fully trained housing staff available to support you in your Housing Department see your council and RSL’s addresses and telephone numbers.