Exclusion from Housing Allocation for Anti-social Behaviour

A person is not eligible to be considered for an allocation if they, or a member of their household, has been guilty of unacceptable behaviour serious enough to make them unsuitable to be a tenant of the Council or of a registered social landlord (including cases where the person or a member of their household is the subject of an Anti-Social Behaviour Order).

For the purposes of this paragraph, unacceptable behaviour means behaviour that, had the person been a secure tenant of a housing authority at the time, would have entitled that housing authority to a possession order under s.84 of the Housing Act 1985 in relation to any of the grounds in Part 1 of Schedule 2, other than ground 8. If an applicant is guilty of unacceptable behaviour serious enough to make them unsuitable to be a tenant of a housing authority then they may be excluded from the waiting list.

In deciding whether the behaviour is serious enough to warrant possession consideration will be given to guidance issued by the ODPM. Consideration will also be given to whether the behaviour of the person or, where applicable, of a member of their household has improved sufficiently to make them suitable to be a tenant. Where the City Council with the information available to them considers this to be the case the applicant will not be considered ineligible under this paragraph.

The test of unacceptable behaviour is if the behaviour of the tenant or a member of the tenants family would have resulted in the council applying for a possession order under section 84 of the Housing Act 1996 in relation to any of the grounds in Part 1 of schedule 2, other than ground 8. These grounds relate to behaviour likely to cause a nuisance or annoyance, and commonly include breach of tenancy, arrears, nuisance and damage to property.

How this will be assessed
On receipt, all such applications will be temporarily suspended to allow enquiries to be made
The applicant will be notified of suspension and given reasons
Requests for references will be sent to previous landlords etc and checks made on any former social landlord tenancies.
If on completion of enquiries there is no evidence of unacceptable behaviour the application will be processed as normal
If there is evidence of unacceptable behaviour the applicant will be notified in writing that exclusion from the waiting list is being considered and given 28 days to provide any additional information to assist in the decision making. The application will remain suspended during this process.
The Allocations Officer will investigate further to establish the following:
Is there hard evidence of the unacceptable behaviour rather than hearsay
Is the unacceptable behaviour sufficient to meet one of the grounds for possession in Schedule 2 (part 1) of the Housing Act 1985
If the ground is met, is the behaviour serious enough that the Court would have awarded a possession order if they had been a tenant of WCC (taking into account the balance between the interest of the applicant and that of the public). In cases where it is considered the court would have suspended the possession order, the behaviour may not be considered serious enough to make the applicant unsuitable as a tenant.
Was the behaviour within the applicant's control?
Does their behaviour make them "unsuitable" to be a tenant both at the time of the behaviour and now (NB. The absence of bad behaviour will qualify as evidence that behaviour has improved).
If there is not sufficient evidence to find that the applicant or a member of their family is unsuitable to be a tenant of the housing authority the application will be re-activated and the applicant informed in writing.
If there is sufficient evidence to find that the applicant or a member of their family is unsuitable to be a tenant of the housing authority the application will be cancelled.
The applicant will be notified of the decision, the reasons for it and their right to request a review of the decision.

In all cases involving this part of the housing register policy, Winchester City Council will adhere closely to the relevant statutory guidance together with the Code of Guidance issued by ODPM