Mutual exchange

Mutual exchange

Waterloo has partnered with Homes Direct to provide a free online services to help residents find suitable homes for mutual exchange.

Who can apply for mutual exchange?

We will usually agree to you looking for an exchange as long as:

  • you are not on a Starter or Probationary tenancy - if you have this type of tenancy you cannot apply for an exchange for the first 12 months
  • you have a clear rent account – although we may still approve tenants with rent arrears if you have stuck to an agreed payment plan for at least three months or have recently made a payment which has at least halved the total amount outstanding
  • there are no ongoing problems with your tenancy

How do I look for a mutual exchange?

Register on the Homes Direct website. This involves giving your details and information on the type of home you are looking for. It must be the person named on your tenancy agreement who makes the application.

Homes Direct will automatically ask us to approve your application. You do not need to contact us.

Once you are approved, you will be able to start searching for a suitable home swap anywhere in the country.

What happens when I find a suitable swap?

When you find a suitable match, you need to contact the other tenant to discuss a potential swap. (Depending on which scheme the other applicant is registered with, there may be a charge to access their contact details.) If you both agree that you want to exchange, then let us know.

We will send out mutual exchange application forms to you and the other tenant. The landlord of the property you want to move to, if not Waterloo, may also ask you to complete an application form.

When the forms are returned we will carry out a number of checks including references, rent and tenancy checks, and we will visit your home to assess the condition of your property. By law, we have to give you a decision within 42 days.

We will usually agree to the exchange providing that:

  • the move does not result in overcrowding
  • you do not have major rent arrears
  • you have made the payment for the gas and/or electric tests
  • there are no ongoing problems with your tenancy
  • you repair any damage to your home before moving
  • any other landlords involved give their permission too

Before the exchange goes ahead, we will make any repairs that are our responsibility and arrange a gas (if applicable) and electrical safety check of the Waterloo property. You are responsible for the cost of these tests.

If you have any questions or need any help registering with Homes Direct please call us on 0345 600 6055 or talk to your housing officer. You can also download the Homes Direct leaflet below or find out more information on their website.

PDFHomes Direct mutual exchange leaflet, 2013 kDownload

Waterloo Homes residents

If you are a shared owner, leaseholder or market rent tenant, please go to the Waterloo Homes website

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