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What is Homesearch?

Homesearch is the Choice Based Lettings scheme for Rushcliffe. It is the way to apply for social housing in the Borough.

Every week, social landlords advertise their empty properties on the Homesearch website, and through the paper Homesearch newsletter. You can then search for an empty property that meets your needs, in a place where you want to live.

When you have registered with Homesearch, you can then place a “bid” on a property. This means you have expressed your interest in it. You do not use money to “bid”. At the end of the week, the property is normally offered to the person who has bid on it who is in the highest priority band, or who has been in that band for the longest time if there is more than one person.

Unlike the old waiting list system, you have to be active and bid for any property you wish to live in. You will not be offered any property unless you have chosen to bid for it. That’s why it’s called Choice Based Lettings.

How do I apply?

You can find more information and apply online on the Homesearch website. Please note there are two stages to applying. First, you have to select ‘online application’ and register the details of your household. You will then get a reference number and a memorable date (which is your security feature). You then need to log in using these details and complete your application for housing.

Can anyone apply for Homesearch?

No. In order to qualify to join Homesearch, you must have both a need for rehousing (i.e. not simply that you want to move to a different area) and a local connection to Rushcliffe. Read about housing need and what we consider to be a local connection and the allocation of social housing in the Council's Housing Allocation Policy.

If you do not have both of these, we will not accept your application. There are some exceptions to this. For instance, if you are 50 or over, and have no children, and you want to move into sheltered housing, then you do not need a housing need or local connection. This is because there are a lot more vacancies in sheltered housing.

Do I have to use the internet to use Homesearch?

No, if you cannot use the internet, please call our Customer Services Centre on 0115 981 9911. They will make an appointment to call you back and complete the application over the telephone, or for you to come into the Customer Service Centre if you prefer.

If you do not wish to use the internet to place bids, you can see the properties available every week in the newsletter that is distributed to the Contact Centre and local libraries. You can place bids by telephone, or by coming into the Customer Service Centre, where staff can help you to place a bid. You may also be able to get help at your local library. Please download the scheme guide below to see further information on how to do this.

If you need any assistance to use Homesearch, please contact us using the details at the top of this page. We can also provide information in other formats or other languages to help you to access the scheme.

Other options

Homesearch does not mean there are any more properties available. There are still many more people in need of housing than there are vacant properties, and some properties receive over a hundred bids.

If you are in a low band, and you find that you are consistently being placed low on long shortlists, this means you are likely to have a long wait for social housing. You may wish to consider other options, such as private rented housing. Our Housing Options Team can provide advice.

Housing Advice and Homelessness