If your current West Kent home is no longer suitable you can join the housing register by applying to Kent Homechoice but you will be able to move more quickly through one of these options:
Mutual exchange - swap your home with another tenant
A mutual exchange is when two or more tenants exchange (swap) their homes.
Each tenant must move into their exchange partner’s property and take on responsibility for that tenancy.
If you are thinking of exchanging, you first need to find an exchange partner. Exchange Locata is a good website to log your details on if you want to find an exchange. Another popular way to find exchanges is on Facebook.
Move to a smaller home
You can apply to the housing register for the area where you want to live and bid on smaller homes. If you’re aged over 50 you may qualify for help through our 'Small is Beautiful’ scheme. If you’re under 50 we’ll give you priority on the housing register but you won’t qualify for 'Small is Beautiful' incentives.
Emerald - homes for over 55s
Our Emerald homes are available to rent for people aged 55 and over. We offer quality homes, choice and flexible services as well as a wide range of activities across three housing options.
You could buy a share in a new home and pay rent to a landlord on the part you don't own. If you can't afford to buy a property outright, shared ownership (or low cost home ownership) might be suitable for you.
Shared ownership means you part buy a percentage of the property and rent the remainder from a landlord (usually a housing association).
- Private renting: The Shelter website has useful information about how to rent privately. If you don’t have the cash for a tenancy deposit, you may be able to apply for a rent deposit, rent guarantee or bond scheme from your local council. Visit Crisis to search for a variety of help in your area.
House sharing: Sharing a home with others can be cheaper than renting on your own. Websites like Gumtree and Spareroom advertise shared accommodation. For information on rights and responsibilities when sharing a house visit the Shelter website.
Disabled adaptations to help you to stay in your current home
We have an enablement service for residents who need adaptations to help them be independent in their homes.
- If you need minor changes, such as a grab rail or different taps please call 01732 749400 and ask for the Emerald Enablement Service.
- If you need more major adaptations, for example a level access shower or increased space, an assessment from an Occupational Therapist at Social Services will be needed. You may then be able to apply for a disabled facilities grant from the local authority to fund the adaptations recommended. We won't always agree to major changes to your home - especially where you have more bedrooms than you need or if it's possible to find another home more suitable for your disability.
Our enablement team will help you find the right option and support you to make the application for grant, or liaise with other teams or organisations if appropriate.
Extensions or alterations to homes
If your home is too small because your family has increased or you need adaptations, we may, in very exceptional circumstances, agree to build an extension if there is no suitable alternative available. Each request is considered on its own merits.
We have guidelines to help us make the decision, but it is entirely at our discretion. Residents don’t have a right to have an extension request granted and we reserve the right to refuse any request having considered all the information available.