Bucks Tenancy Strategy
1. Aims and Purpose of the Buckinghamshire Tenancy Strategy
1.1. Local authorities are required to produce a tenancy strategy. The contents of the tenancy strategy are set out in the Localism Act 2011 .This Strategy has been written in partnership by all the district councils within the county of Buckinghamshire, a group which for the purposes of this document will be referred to as the Partnership. The four councils in the Partnership are Aylesbury Vale District Council, Chiltern District Council, South Bucks District Council and Wycombe District Council.
1.2. The four district councils in Bucks already work closely together on housing issues, sharing a Common Allocations Policy and a Choice Based Lettings System called Bucks Home Choice (BHC). This Partnership considered it appropriate to co-operate on a Tenancy Strategy; tying this in with the on-going development of Bucks Home Choice and conversations with local Registered Providers (RPs).
1.3. This Strategy outlines what the Partnership expects from RPs in terms of the development of affordable housing, tenancies, rents and allocations in the county. The Strategy has been written with regard to the following Housing Strategies:
- AVDC: Housing and Homelessness Strategy 2008-2013
- CDC: Strategic Housing Framework 2012/13 and the Homelessness Strategy
- SBDC: Homelessness Strategy 2008-13
- WDC: Housing Strategy 2009-2014
1.4. This is a statutory document to which RPs are to have regard when formulating tenancy policies.
1.5. The Partnership believes that the district councils are well placed to provide information on the housing needs of the county and that if RPs apply the principles of this Strategy, it should enable the changes to be introduced consistently throughout Buckinghamshire.
1.6. The Partnership expects:
a) a proportion of affordable housing (both new build and re-lets) to be let as social rented housing (in accordance with the definition set down in the National Planning Policy Framework ), and expects RPs to have due regard to the Homes and Communities Agency guidelines in respect of relets.
b) the use of one year “introductory tenancies” for all new lets, and;
c) a minimum of a five year tenancy term being offered following the introductory period, where fixed-term tenancies are utilised (unless there are exceptional circumstances and excluding circumstances where lifetime tenancies may be considered to be appropriate).