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What you need to know in St Helens

1. How do I become an Under One Roof member?

You become a member of Under One Roof by registering and completing an online application though this website.

We no longer accept paper applications. If you need help to complete your online application click here.

 

2. Can anybody join Under One Roof?

Anyone who is over 18 can apply to join Under One Roof as long as they meet the eligibility criteria that can be found St Helens Council’s Allocations Policy.

If you are aged 16/17 there are some exceptional circumstances when we may consider your application.

Further details can be found here.

 

3. How will my housing need be assessed?

There will still be four bands, A to D. We work out which band you are in based on the information you tell us about your circumstances and housing need. 

 

4. What checks will I have to go through?

We will check that the information you have given to us is correct and that you can provide evidence to support your situation and the housing banding you have been given.  When you make a successful bid we will contact you to check the details you have provided on your application.  You will be given 48 hours to provide any supporting information that we require.  If you are unable to provide the information requested this may affect your banding.

You may also need to provide information from support agencies or other professionals that you are involved with. 


5. How will I know what homes are available to rent in St Helens?

We advertise properties as requested by our partner landlords on www.U-1-R.co.uk every week.

Every Thursday at 00.01am our available homes go live. You then have until 11.59pm the following Monday to bid online. You can bid for up three homes every week.

 

You can view all properties that we are advertising when the bidding  cycle is open.

When you log in to your account you will only see the properties that you meet the eligibility criteria for and are able to  bid on.

Further details on eligibility can be found in the Allocations Policy

 

 

6. What are Anytime Adverts ?

From time to time we will advertise properties available on the ‘Anytime’ adverts page.

These may be placed on the website at anytime and if you are interested in any of these properties you will need to bid, however bids placed on Anytime adverts are in addition to any bids placed in the main advert cycles

Your bid will still be considered in order of housing band and registration date.

 

7. What is bidding and how do I do it?

Bidding is expressing your interest in a home that is advertised.

In order to bid on a property you will need to log in to your account online or on your mobile phone.  When you log on you will see the properties that you are eligible to bid on.

Here is a quick bidding checklist:

  •  See a home you like
  •  Check it is in an area you want to live in
  •  Check it is the type of home you are able to bid for
  •  Submit your bid

Remember, you can have up to three bids every week but cannot bid for the same home more than once.

Please note: You should only bid on properties you are genuinely interested in - you do not need to use all three bids.

 

8. How will homes be allocated to me?

When the closing date has passed we look at all the people who have bid for each property.

The successful person is usually the one who meets the property criteria, is in the highest housing band and who has been on the Under One Roof waiting list in that band for the longest amount of time.

The successful bidder is then contacted by email or phone so we can check their details, the banding awarded to them and to request relevant proofs.

We will require:

  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of address
  • Proof of income or benefits you receive
  • Landlords references
  • Supporting information from agencies you may be involved with, Social Services, National Probation Service etc

You will be given 48hours to provide the required information.  Failure to provide the information may result in a change to your banding and you missing out on being considered for the property.

 

9. How long will it take for me to get a home?

We can't confirm exactly how long a person may wait to be re-housed as this will depend on individual circumstances and a number of contributing factors, such as:

  • Type and size of property that you need
  • Demand for similar properties from other applicants
  • Availability of properties in your area of choice

We advise applicants to look at the recent lettings  results that are available on our website. 

They can be found under Recent Lets - CBL allocations scheme.

The recent lettings results provides details of all the properties that have been let and the band of the successful bidder. This can help people when considering the areas in which to place their bids.

If you are able to consider properties in a wide range of areas then this may improve your chances of getting a home more quickly.

 

10. What happens when a home has been allocated to me?

Once we have checked your application details and ou have provided the relevant information we request,  we will send your information over to the relevant landlord, this is called a nomination. 

The landlord will then contact you directly and carry out their own checks which may include an affordability check. If you meet their criteria you will be made an offer and invited to view the property before making a decision if you want to accept the property or not. 

 

11. What happens if I refuse the home I’m offered?

In most cases if, after you have seen the property, you decide it is not the home you want, you should let the landlord know as soon as possible. This will allow the next person on the list to be considered.

If you have a Band A priority, refusing a property may lead to a review of your priority status. There are some consequences to refusing a number of offers, details of which can be found in the Allocations Policy.

 

12. What happens if my circumstances change?

You must tell us about any changes in your circumstances straight away.

You can do this by logging into your online account and amending the details on your application form. 

Your new details will then be re-assessed. If you fail to tell us about any changes it may affect your application and may result in future offers being withdrawn. 

 

13. What happens if I’m over 55?

If you are over 55 and looking for accommodation for older people or with more support you can be considered for our specialist accommodation or Extra Care housing. 

 

14. Where can I find out more about St Helens Council’s housing policy?

You can read St Helens Council’s full housing policy here.

 

15. What help and support is available to me?

The Under One Roof team can offer help and advice in completing the online application form, accessing adverts, placing bids and answering any other queries. 

You can contact the team by using the message option on your application or if you are not yet registered you can use the Contact us page.

 

16. How do I complain?

We hope that your experience with Under One Roof is positive, however if you think we haven't done something right we want you to tell us.  

You can do this by using the Contact us page on this website.