Renfrewshire Council

House exchange

If you are a Renfrewshire council tenant, you could swap your home with another Scottish Secure tenant. This is called a 'mutual exchange'.  

By swapping homes you may be able to get the kind of house you want without having to wait on the Council's housing waiting list.

How can I find someone to swap with?

House Exchange

Renfrewshire Council is a member of House Exchange. The website for exchanging properties has been designed to bring tenants together, who are looking to swap their home.  You can also search for tenants who live in other parts of the UK if you are considering moving from Renfrewshire.

If you are interested in finding another tenant to swap your home with, please register on the House Exchange website.  It is easy to register and if you are a tenant of Renfrewshire Council you can register for free.

Please note that you need to be a Scottish Secure Tenant before your mutual exchange will be considered.

When you register with House Exchange, you will need to provide:

·    Your contact details

·    Details of your current property

·    A photo of your current property (if possible)

·    Details of the size and type of property you are looking for

Once you have applied to register, your application will be reviewed by Renfrewshire Council and you will be sent an email which includes your ID number and password, to confirm successful registration to the site.

When this has been done, your property will appear on the online database and you will be able to run searches to find someone suitable to swap with.  You should ensure that the property you wish to exchange to will meet your needs. If you claim housing benefit or Universal Credit you should check your entitlement.

If you have any questions about house exchanges please contact:

·         your local housing office;

·          our Homexchange Shop, or

·         our Customer Service Centre on 0300 300 0222 where staff will be happy to assist you.

HomeChoice@Renfrewshire - Homexchange Shop

The Homexchange Shop has been set up to provide advice about housing options and mutual exchanges - in particular for tenants affected by the under-occupancy rule, as a result of the UK Government's Welfare Reform changes.  The Shop is the first of its kind in Scotland with the Council and partner housing associations who work together to assist tenants who want to move. 

The Shop is based at 7A Moss Street, Paisley PA1 1BG, and is a partnership between the Council and Linstone, Paisley, Ferguslie Park, Williamsburgh, Sanctuary, Horizon and Link Housing Associations.

The shop features adverts of the latest additions to the House Exchange website in Renfrewshire, as well as other Council and housing association properties for let in the area.  You can come in and we can assist you to search for a suitable exchange or update your House Exchange details.  Our staff are on hand to provide information and advice on housing-related matters.

To arrange a housing options appointment call 0300 300 0222 and select option 2, or simply drop in to the HomeExchange shop in Moss Street, Paisley for more information. 

What should I do if I find someone to swap with?

You must have a current housing application with Renfrewshire Council to allow your application to be processed.  If you or any of the parties wishing to exchange do not, please contact your local housing office or the Homexchange Shop to arrange for a housing options discussion to complete a housing application.

Contact the other party and make arrangements to visit each other's houses.

Inspect their house carefully.  Make sure you are happy with the condition of it, as the landlord will not be responsible for any decoration needed or for carrying out repairs which are the tenant's responsibility.

If you decide after viewing that you want to swap, you must both complete a mutual exchange application form.  You can get this at your local housing office or at the HomExchange Shop.

What happens next?

Once we have your application we will:

Inspect both houses (where both parties live in Renfrewshire Council properties) to make sure they are in good condition and request a tenancy reference if another landlord is involved.

Check the size of the houses to make sure no overcrowding will occur if you do swap.

Check that both tenants have a clear rent account and there have been no problems with either tenancy.

If you want to swap with a tenant outwith Renfrewshire, we will write to the other landlord for information to let us assess the application.  We will also give the landlord information about your tenancy.

How long will I have to wait before getting an answer?

We will give you a decision within one month.  We will confirm that we have received your mutual exchange application form within 10 working days of receipt.

If we agree to the swap, you and the other tenant(s) will be notified in writing and you will be asked to sign a new tenancy agreement for your new home and terminate your current property.  You must not move in before the exchange has been approved and you have signed for the new property.

What if I am refused permission?

Permission would only be refused with good reason.

We will not agree to a swap where the house you want to move to does not suit your needs or either party has an outstanding rent account balance.

If you do not agree with our decision, you can challenge it by giving your reasons in writing to your local housing office.  They will then let you know of their decision within 14 days of receiving your appeal.

Further information
All applications should be made to the local housing office which covers the area where you live.