What is a mutual exchange?
A mutual exchange is where two or more tenants decide they want to swap homes. You can exchange with a housing association or Council property.
Why should you want to exchange?
A mutual exchange may be your best option if you want to move but are not eligible to register on our housing waiting list because your present accommodation is suitable for you and your family. Even if you are on the waiting list it is still worth considering a mutual exchange as you may face a long wait for a move.
How do you find an exchange?
Last year the Council joined a national exchange scheme called 'HomeSwapper' which enables tenants to register for free. We are only able to offer this free service to tenants of Fareham Borough Council. The Council has as a result now withdrawn its register.
If you are a Fareham Borough Council Tenant and wish to take advantage of this free service please visit www.homeswapper.co.uk and register your details.
If you live in the Fareham Borough and have another social landlord then please visit www.homeswapper.co.uk to check if your landlord is partnered with the service or alternatively contact your landlord direct.
What happens next?
- Once you have found a tenant to exchange with, you must both complete a mutual exchange application form and return it to our tenancy services team. You must be careful to make a thorough inspection of the property you wish to move to before you accept the exchange because, once you have moved, you will be responsible for the repair of any non standard fixtures and fittings left by the previous tenant and for the decoration of it. We will continue to be responsible for structure and general repairs to the property.
- Your area housing estates officer will visit you with a maintenance surveyor to inspect your property and to let you know if you have to do any work to it before you move. They will also answer any questions about the exchange.
- We must give you a final decision on whether or not the exchange can proceed within 42 calendar days of receiving your application forms. There are, by law, only 10 grounds on which we can refuse the exchange - the most common being if you are subject to a notice seeking possession or if you wish to move to a property which is much bigger or smaller than you actually need.
- We may approve the exchange on condition that a breach of tenancy is corrected before the move can take place. For example, if rent arrears are outstanding the debt must be paid before the exchange can proceed.
- Once we are satisfied, we will send you written notification of approval for the exchange. You and the tenant you are exchanging with will be asked to call into the Civic Offices to sign a deed of assignment. If you have a joint tenancy both tenants must attend. You should bring some identification with you.
- Once the deed of assignment has been signed you will be able to move.
- You must not go ahead with the swap until we have agreed the exchange in writing and the relevant papers have been signed. If you move without this, you will be putting your tenancy in jeopardy and could end up with no home at all.
For more information, contact tenancy services on 01329 236100, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org