City council to change housing allocation policy

Aberdeen City Council is embarking on the final stages of implementing its new housing allocation policy following a major review over the past two years.

The review included a large consultation exercise with service users and, as a result of the views expressed by users, the council has developed a simpler, transparent and more user-friendly allocation policy.

The new policy is based on need and takes into account the supply and demand for council properties.

The council's Housing and Environment Committee approved the introduction of the new allocations policy when it convened in May [2011]. The policy document is available to view at www.aberdeencity.gov.uk/allocationpolicyreview

The new policy is due to take effect in October. As part of the implementation all applicants will have their applications re-assessed under the new criteria. We will be contacting all our service users in due course with information on any change to their housing application priority.

Aberdeen City Council's Housing and Environment Convener Councillor Neil Cooney said: "The council currently owns and manages around 22,900 properties but this figure is declining.

"There are currently around 8,000 applicants on the housing lists with around 500 new applications each month. This means that we do not have enough homes to meet the demand for council housing in the city and this situation may prevail for some years. If demand continues to rise and supply remains limited we need to ensure that we house those in most need.

"The current policy is complex and can be difficult to understand so the council is revising it to ensure we can react effectively to the increasing demand and limited housing stock.

"Changes to any council policy will naturally have an affect to some degree on some of our service users, but this will give priority to those in the greatest need while being as sensitive as possible to the circumstances of all applicants."