Apply for council housing

Please be aware that demand for a council home significantly outstrips supply, as approximately 700 households out of a current 6,500 plus on the waiting list, are housed each year.

This means that council and Housing Association properties are not widely available and usually only go to those who are in the most need. Applicants can consider other housing options: 

  • Private renting: You can apply to the private rental agencies in the area for suitable accommodation. You may be eligible for help with paying your rent by claiming for housing benefit or universal credit. 
  • Mutual exchanges: Swindon Borough Council are signed up to Home Swapper. Home Swapper is a mutual exchange system for council or other social housing tenants who wish to swap their homes. Some Housing Associations may also be registered to Home Swapper or operate a separate exchange system. Go to the Homeswapper website or speak to your landlord directly for more information. 
  • Low Cost Home Ownership: If you are interested in low cost home ownership then register at Help to buy or contact the home buy agents on 0800 456 1188. 
  • Help and advice: The Housing Options Team is centred on preventing homelessness by offering housing options tailored to individual needs. They can offer specialist housing advice to help you keep your current home, advice for people who need support to live independently and advice on alternative housing options. Phone 01793 445503 or e-mail for more information. Please note: These contact details may change over time.

Please note: In most circumstances existing social housing tenants will not be offered a property unless their rent account is clear. You will also not usually be considered for other accommodation if the management of your current home is not satisfactory or if you are under notice for a breach of condition of tenancy.

If you want to move because of problems with anti-social behaviour, problems with repairs or because you need your property to be adapted, a transfer may not be the best option and you should speak to your own landlord for advice. Swindon Borough Council tenants should contact their Neighbourhood Housing Officer.

Full details can be found in the Housing Allocations Policy.

Making your application

If you feel that you meet the criteria set out in the Allocations Scheme, you can make an online application to be on the council housing waiting list. You can do this:

  • on your own smartphone, tablet or computer
  • at your local library

You will then have 28 days from the date you submitted your online housing application to submit all relevant proofs for all applicants and occupants on your application. Proofs can be submitted by registering your account or by emailing quoting your application number. Failure to submit your proofs within the 28 days will result in your application being cancelled. 

If you pass the eligibility check and complete the application form, this does not necessarily mean you have been accepted onto the waiting list. We will contact you with our decision.

If you fail an eligibility check, it means you do not meet the criteria set out in our social housing allocation policy. This means you won’t be considered for a council home.

If you are at risk of losing your home or have been served notice on your tenancy, this does not automatically make you eligible for social housing.

We would usually aim to contact you with our decision within 40 working days of your application. However, when application volumes are high, the waiting period may be slightly longer.

Please be patient with us and do not re-apply, as we will be assessing applications in date order. You will be registered from the date of application, so the time will not be lost. If you are accepted onto the housing waiting list, your banding date will be the date of your application.  

If you have a change in circumstance to your current active housing application, kindly complete the change in circumstance form. When you have completed the form, you should send to:

Get started - apply for the council housing waiting list


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