What happens after I make a homeless apllication?
What happens after I make a homelessness application?
You will have an interview with your Housing Officer to conduct a housing assessment. The Housing Officer will only contact you if there is anything to update you on your application, including if more information is needed, or they need to check some information with you, or if they are near to making a decision on your case.
The assessment process is based on individual circumstances therefore your housing officer will likely contact you depending upon the nature and complexity of your case.
We would ask that you do not contact your Housing Officer unnecessarily during the time your application is being considered, unless you have new information to add to that which you have already provided when you made your application. This will allow the officer to deal with your application as quickly as possible. Your housing officer will let you know if they need to speak to you or need any extra information regarding your application. It is important to let your officer know if you change your phone number or e-mail address as they may need to contact you during the course of their enquires.
How long will it take to make a decision on my homelessness application?
We aim to complete our investigation and decision on homelessness applications within 33 working days - this is usually about six weeks after you have made your application.
There are some cases which are straightforward which may be decided sooner, and also some more complicated cases which we know will take longer than 33 working days.
It helps us to work on your case more effectively if you provide all the relevant information and respond to requests for information quickly so that we can make thorough enquiries into your application.
Will I be given somewhere to live?
This depends on your individual circumstances. If we believe you are eligible, homeless and in priority need, you will be offered interim (emergency) accommodation.
Do I have to pay rent?
Everybody is responsible for paying rent. Even if you are in receipt of full benefits you will still have to pay a service charge for your accommodation if placed into bed and breakfast accommodation or Saunderton Lodge. All rents are means tested and you may qualify for some assistance from Housing Benefits therefore it is important that you complete a Housing Benefit form as soon as you move into your temporary accommodation. If you fail to complete a housing benefit application, you will be liable for the full rent.
If you do not pay your rent or service charge the Council will cancel your booking and you will have to find your own accommodation regardless of your household circumstances.
What will happen if my application is successful?
The Council will continue to provide accommodation for you until we either find you suitable, affordable private rented accommodation or you are successful if expressing an interest in accommodation via Bucks Home Choice.
If you do not pay your rent and or service charge or if you breach your tenancy conditions, the duty owed to you will be discharged and you will be asked to leave the accommodation provided and no further offer of accommodation will be forthcoming.
If my application is unsuccessful, how long can I stay in the temporary housing you have provided me?
Before we make a decision that your application has been unsuccessful in certain cases we will provide you with a ‘minded to’ letter giving you a final opportunity to provide further evidence to support your case.
If we decide that the Council does not owe you 'the full housing duty' (this means we do not have a legal duty to provide you with ongoing accommodation), if we provided you with interim accommodation, we will normally allow you to stay between 7 and 28 days depending on your individual household circumstances.
This period is to give you time to arrange somewhere for you/your household to live, and will depend on your individual situation. Your housing officer will notify you of this when they give you their decision letter.
Can I stay in temporary accommodation whilst my homelessness application is being reviewed?
You can request a review of the decision made on your homelessness application and request accommodation pending the outcome of the review. However the Council does not have a duty to provider accommodation pending a review. The reviewing officer will consider your circumstances and the relative merits of your case and advise you of his/her decision accordingly.