This page tells you everything you need to know about your States House Tenancy. If you live in GHA accommodation, follow this link.
The 2017 Capital Sums Policy is here.
- Your rights and responsibilities as a tenant are set out in the Statutory Tenancy Agreement which you sign when you move in. You can see an agreement in the downloads section of this page.
- When you move in you'll be given a tenancy pack. It contains booklets which go into more detail about those rights and responsibilities. There are copies of them in the downloads section.
- Every tenant has a Tenancy Management Officer (TMO) who's their main point of contact. They work closely with you to make sure that your tenancy runs smoothly. You should contact your TMO if you want to talk about:
- Your rent
- Your tenancy agreement
- Rules, policies and procedures relating to your tenancy
- Reporting nuisance or antisocial behaviour
- Rent is usually paid on a weekly or monthly basis. It has to be paid in advance - so you have to pay your weekly rent before we charge you. If you don't you'll go into arrears.
- If you have any problems paying your rent you should contact your TMO who can offer help and advice. It is important that you let us know straight away. If you go into rent arrears, you run the risk of losing your home. You can find more information about paying your rent in the Payment of Rent leaflet available in the downloads section.
- Paying by Direct Debit
- All tenants should be paying by Direct Debit. It's the best system for both you and us.
- Automatic payments mean you don't have to worry about forgetting to pay and getting into arrears.
- Direct Debit is a really simple way of paying your rent. You might already be paying other bills in this way - it's safe and easy.
- You can choose to pay by weekly or monthly Direct Debit.
- To start paying by Direct Debit, download a Direct Debit Mandate Form from this page and send it to Housing. This form tells your bank to send us your rent money on a certain date every week or every month. As long as you have enough in your account to cover the cost of your rent, there's no way you can get into arrears.
- If your rent changes, we'll change your Direct Debit. Don't worry - we'll tell you about the new rent and give you at least 2 working days' notice before we take payment. That gives you time to move money or talk to us if you need to.
- Paying at Edward T Wheadon House
- If you are unable to pay by Direct Debit, payments can be made by cash, cheque or debit card at the counter on Level 3 at Edward T Wheadon House. You'll need your rent account number and details of how much you want to pay. If you don't know those details, your TMO can give them to you by calling Tenancy Management on 756550. You can also make payments over the phone using your debit card by calling 717315.
- Paying directly from Supplementary Benefit
- Social Security can pay your rent directly to us as long as your Supplementary Benefit payment is at least as much as your rent.
- If you'd like to pay this way, download the form on this page and send it to us. It gives us permission to get your rent from Social Security and discuss any changes with them.
- This is only a reliable option if your Supplementary Benefit is going to be the same or higher than your rent each and every week. If your supplementary benefit changes week to week, and some weeks your payment isn't enough to cover your rent, this method won't work for you.
- Paying online
- You can follow this link to pay online.
- You'll need your rent account number and details of how much you want to pay. Your TMO can give you that information if you need it.
- Paying directly from your wages
- If your employer agrees, you can set up an Employer Mandate, where your rent is paid straight to us from your salary.
- You need to write to us to set this up, and to give us permission to be able to talk to your employer about your rent.
- Paying at the Post Office
- You can pay at a Post Office payment counter. You'll need your address or rent account number, and details of how much you want to pay. Your TMO can give you that information if you need it.
Rent Rebate Benefit Scheme
- Housing operates the Rent Rebate Benefit Scheme. It's designed to make sure that your rent is set at a level which you can afford. Although no money changes hands, Rent Rebate is a type of benefit payment.
- To apply for Rent Rebate Benefit, contact us and request a Rent Rebate Benefit Application Form, or download one from this page.
- Every property has a Standard Weekly Rent (SWR) attached. Under the Rent Rebate Benefit Scheme, Housing pays some of that amount for you, which means you have to pay less. How much less depends on how much money you and your partner have and on the number and ages of other people living with you.
- It is very important that you tell a TMO straightaway if anyone in your household has a change of circumstance (for example a new job, overtime payments, benefit changes, a child leaving education, or someone moving into or out of the property) . Any of these things could lead to you receiving a smaller or large rent rebate. If you don't tell us, you're at risk of being paid a rebate that you are not entitled to, and that's against the law.
- A transfer is when a tenant asks to be moved to another social rented housing unit. It is not a house swap: they're asking to move to an empty property. You can download the Transfer and Exchange Policy from this page
- We will consider transferring you if:
- You continue to be eligible for social housing
- The size of property you want is not too large or small
- You haven't been in rent arrears for at least six months
- You have not breached your tenancy agreement during the previous twelve months;
- The property you are living in passes an inspection. The inspection will tell us if you have looked after the property and if any significant work is needed
- There are other conditions, but these are the main ones.
- You will be removed from the transfer list if you don't pay your rent on time or if you do anything that breaks your tenancy agreement.
- We prioritise transfer applications in the same way we do regular applications for social housing, by using a points system. Priority is based on housing need. If your current home has what you need but you want to move to a new area, you may be waiting for some time.
- Everyone has the right to live in an area that is clean, safe and pleasant. And everyone should respect and show consideration for their neighbours.
- If you are concerned about nuisance or harassment, the Living in your Neighbourhood booklet in the downloads section of this page will tell you what to do.
- The Pet Policy and a list of acceptable dog breeds is available on the download section on this page.
- You should speak to us before you get any pet. This is because we have agreed with animal welfare organisations that we will make sure that a tenant is able to afford and look after a pet.
- You need to get permission in writing before getting a cat or dog, and some dog breeds are banned, and a local animal welfare agency will carry out a home check.
- Cats and dogs must be neutered, micro chipped, registered with a vet, and insured.
- The breeding of animals is banned.
- To apply for a pet, download of the application form on this page.
Reviews of Tenancy
- You have to tell us about any change to your circumstances which might affect the rent you're charged or your eligibility for social rented housing.
- At least once every five years, and every time you apply for the Rent Rebate Benefit Scheme, we'll check to make sure that the information we have about you is right. If something's changed and you haven't told us, you could be prosecuted and it could affect your tenancy.
- If you disagree with our decision you can ask for it to be reviewed by another member of staff. After that, if you still disagree, you can appeal - follow this link for more details.
Change of circumstances
- You have to tell us about any change to your circumstances which might affect the rent you're charged or your eligibility for social rented housing. The Income Thresholds Policy available for download has more information about this.
- That might include people moving into or out of the property, a change in your salary, or a difference in the needs of the household. Contact us straight away to let us know. If you don't, and we find out later, you could be prosecuted.
- If you come into a large amount of money, Housing will apply the Capital Sums Policy. You can see that policy in the Downloads section of this page.