Property Management Transfers

					 9. Property Management Transfers




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   Property Management
      Transfer Policy




9.1 Property Management Transfer Policy



9.1.1                     The Office of Housing (OOH) offers current tenants an early housing
Introduction              transfer in the following circumstances:

                          •   when there is a greater demand for the tenant's existing housing
                              than the housing to which the tenant wishes to move,

                          •   to improve stock utilisation, eg. a single person living in a three-
                              bedroom flat is moved to a one-bedroom unit,

                          •   the tenant’s current housing is uninhabitable due to fire, flood or
                              vandalism,

                          •   a tenant of a movable unit is required to transfer as a result of
                              action initiated by the owner/occupant of the main dwelling, or

                          •   a tenant of a movable unit is required to transfer as a result of
                              legal action to initiated by the OOH against the occupant of the
                              main dwelling to recover that property.

                          Transfers under this policy are designed to:

                          •   meet the existing tenant's housing needs

                          •   improve stock utilisation and

                          •   plan for future housing needs.

                          Tenants retain current tenancy conditions when transferring for
                          property management purposes.

         OOH Relocation   Policy relating to tenants who are asked to transfer so that their
manual                    existing housing can be redeveloped, sold or extensively upgraded is
                          detailed in the Relocation manual.



9.1.2 Waiting             The OOH identifies households for property management transfers
                          from the pool of existing transfer applicants where:
list
management                •   there is a higher demand for their existing housing than the
and stock                     housing to which they wish to move; or
utilisation               •   the tenant’s current property is under or over-utilised and there
transfers                     is a lower demand for the housing size that they are eligible to
                              transfer to.




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                                                                                            Transfer Policy



                                     The OOH identifies households for transfer due to under or over-
                                     utilised housing when tenants (or residents) lodge:

                                     •   an application for rebated rent,

                                     •   an application to transfer to a smaller or larger property, and/or

                                     •   a request to sign a new Residential Tenancy Agreement for their
                                         current property as signatories to the previous agreement have
                                         moved out.

                                     The OOH may also check tenancy records to identify over or under-
                                     utilised properties if new housing is being built.


                                     Consent to transfer

                                     The OOH will generally only transfer a tenant as a property
                                     management transfer where they agree to the transfer. If they do
                                     not agree to the transfer, they can remain in their current housing.

                                     If tenants agree to transfer and their current tenancy commenced
                                     prior to 17 November 1997, they retain their current tenancy
                                     conditions on transfer.


                                     Eligibility

         Applications &
                                     Tenants who agree to move for stock utilisation purposes are
Eligibility chapter in this          generally eligible to transfer only if they meet the OOH Wait-turn
manual                               housing eligibility criteria.

                                     In limited circumstances, the Housing Services Manager (HSM) may
                                     approve Property Management transfers for non-eligible households.
                                     The HSM considers:

                                     •   the demand for housing in the locality, ie. the number of
                                         applications on the waiting list for the housing

                                     •   the increased rental revenue, if applicable

                                     •   whether more people would be housed from the waiting list

                                     •    whether the tenant has                 maintained   satisfactory   arrears
                                          repayments, if applicable

                                     •   whether the tenant has met their obligations under the
                                         Residential Tenancies Act 1997 in relation to care of the
                                         property, behaviour towards neighbours, etc., and

                                     •    whether the condition of the property is such that the tenant
                                          cannot remain.




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   Property Management
      Transfer Policy




9.1.3 Transfers           Tenants whose property has been made uninhabitable due to fire,
                          flood, natural disaster or vandalism are eligible for a property
due to                    management transfer.
uninhabitable
housing                   The OOH immediately arranges an inspection of the property in
                          order to determine the condition of the property, and alternative
                          housing for the household where the property is determined to be
                          uninhabitable.

                          If the damaged housing can be repaired within a reasonable
                          timeframe, the household is also given the option to return to the
                          original housing.



9.1.4 Transfers           Movable unit occupants who are required to transfer are eligible for
                          a property management transfer. This could occur as a result of:
from movable
units                     •   action initiated by the occupant/owner of the main dwelling, or

                          •   legal action initiated by the OOH against the occupant of the
                              main dwelling to recover that property.



9.1.5 Househol            Generally, tenants relocating due to their existing housing being
                          uninhabitable are not required to meet the OOH’s Wait-turn rental
d income and              housing income and asset limit eligibility criteria.
asset eligibility
                          Tenants who own property in which their equity is above the general
                          housing asset limit are also transferred.

                          Tenants of movable units required to transfer as a result of action
                          initiated by the occupant/owner of the main dwelling such as a
                          decision to sell their property, or legal action taken by the OOH
                          against the occupant of the main dwelling, are not required to meet
                          the OOH’s income and asset criteria.



9.1.6 Payment             The OOH pays the same costs for tenants relocating for property
                          management purposes as tenants relocating for major upgrade, sale
of relocation             or redevelopment. However, relocation costs are generally not paid
costs                     in the case of uninhabitable housing, or where the tenant of a
                          movable unit must relocate, unless the housing was made
                          uninhabitable due to a failure by the OOH to maintain the property.

                          Costs include electricity and gas connection fees, mail redirection
                          and the removal of household items where the OOH has requested
         OOH Relocation
                          the tenant to relocate.
manual

                          Telephone connection fees are also paid where the tenant already
                          has a telephone at their current property.




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                                                                                    Transfer Policy




9.1.7 Offers of                      Applications from tenants approved for Property Management
                                     transfers are placed after Special Housing Needs applicants on the
housing                              waiting list.

                                     Applicants are generally able to specify a location within their
                                     preferred waiting list area, depending on the availability of stock.

                                     Applicants may request a particular type of property (house, flat,
                                     etc.) where they demonstrate a need for Special Accommodation
                                     Requirements, or where the HSM has approved the request for stock
                                     management reasons.

                                     If an offer is refused, the OOH may make a second offer of housing.


                                     Signing a Residential Tenancy Agreement

                                     Tenants who transfer sign a standard Residential Tenancy
       Signing Tenancy               Agreement for the new housing. They retain their current tenancy
Agreements chapter in
                                     conditions for the new property.
this manual




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   Property Management
    Transfer Procedures




9.2 Property Management Transfer Procedures


                          Identify households currently under or over
9.2.1 Transfers
                          utilising stock
for Stock
Utilisation               Identify households that are currently under or over-utilising stock
Reasons                   by:

                          •   checking property size against household composition for high
                              demand stock types

                          •   checking transfer applicants’ household composition on ISIP

                          •   checking transfer applications when they are submitted, and

                          •   checking rebate applications when they are submitted.



9.2.2 Transfers           Establish whether there is a greater demand for the tenant’s existing
                          housing compared to where they want to move.
for Waiting List
Management
Reasons                   Tenants who have not lodged an application for
                          transfer

                          Conduct a Home visit or write to the tenants who have not lodged
                          an application to transfer asking them to contact the office. Once
                          contact is made, determine if the tenant is interested in transferring
                          and whether the stock type, size and location they wish to transfer
                          to is likely to become available within a reasonable timeframe.

                          Also request information regarding their preferred location and if
                          they have any special accommodation requirements.


                          Tenants      who        have        lodged         an      application            for
                          transfer

                          For tenants who have already lodged an application to transfer,
                          establish if the area they wish to transfer to is less in demand than
                          that of their current housing.




9.2.3 Obtain              Prepare a report providing details of the proposed property
                          management transfer/s and the reason/s and benefits of the
approval from             proposal. It may be necessary to include some or all of the following
the HSM                   details in the report:




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                                     •   the number of bedrooms in their existing housing and the
                                         number they are eligible for,

                                     •   the demand for the tenant's existing housing and the demand for
                                         their preferred location area,

                                     •   approximate waiting times if the applicants were approved for a
                                         Property Management Transfer.



                                     Submit the report to the HSM for consideration and approval.

                                     Once authorised by the HSM, contact the tenant and advise them
                                     that:

                                     •   they have been approved for a Property Management Transfer,
                                         and

                                     •   their current tenancy conditions will apply if they agree to
                                         transfer.

       Matching Clients              Write an interview report, update their early housing status and
with Housing chapter in              check that all documentation is attached to the application.
this manual
                                     Place the application on the appropriate waiting list that matches the
                                     applicant's housing size and preferred locality. Ensure any location
                                     or housing type details are included on the file and on ISIP.


                                     Tenants who do not wish to move

                                     Advise tenants who do not want to move that the opportunity to
                                     transfer will remain if they decide to move at a later date. Write an
                                     interview report and place a copy on their tenancy file. No further
                                     action is required.


                                     Offer the housing

                                     If the applicant refuses the offer of housing, advise them that the
       Offers of Housing             property will be offered to another applicant on the waiting list and
chapter in this manual
                                     will not be available to them if they decide at a later date that they
                                     do want to accept the housing.

                                     Check with the tenant the reason they have refused the offer and
                                     advise the HSM. Mark the offer of housing as refused and return the
                                     application to the waiting list until another suitable property
                                     becomes available.


                                     Sign a Residential Tenancy Agreement

      Signing Tenancy
                                     If the offer has been accepted, arrange an appointment to sign a
Agreements chapter in                Residential Tenancy Agreement.




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   Property Management
    Transfer Procedures


this manual
                          Advise the tenant that:

                          • current tenancy conditions apply in their new property, and
         OOH Relocation
manual
                          • the relocation costs that will be paid by the OOH. Explain the
                            process for paying these costs.

                          Make arrangements with the removalist.

                          Note: A pre-sign up information session may be conducted with the
                                tenant to enable the tenant to ask questions and to fully
                                understand the conditions of the new tenancy. The
                                information session can be held at the time the applicant
                                accepts the offer.



9.2.4 Transfers           Arrange with a FSO to conduct an inspection of the property
                          immediately and to prepare a written report on the condition of the
due to                    property including:
uninhabitable
housing                   •   the damage sustained to the property

                          •   if the property could be made habitable with immediate repairs,
                              or

                          •   if the property is not habitable, if it could be repaired and the
                              likely time frame.


                          If the property is uninhabitable, provide the report to the HSM
                          recommending immediate transfer of the household.

                          Determine alternative properties that are currently vacant that the
                          household could move into, and offer these.

                          Once the tenant has accepted a property for transfer, provide them
                          with the keys and arrange for a sign up. In some circumstances,
                          the sign-up may occur after the keys are handed over to the tenant.
                          Commence the new tenancy from the date the keys are provided,
                          and terminate the tenancy on the damaged property from the same
                          date.

                          Where necessary, arrange for any credit balances to be transferred
                          from the vacated account to the current account.

                          Note: If the tenant has an existing transfer application, use this to
                                create the new tenancy. In order to ensure that they retain
                                their transfer application, once the new tenancy has been
                                created, register a new transfer application and backdate the
                                effective date to the date of the application used to create
                                the new tenancy.

                          Advise the tenant that if property damage occurred as a result of
                          failure by the OOH to adequately maintain the property, their



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                                                                                  Transfer Procedures


                                     removal costs will be reimbursed.

                                     If the property is to be repaired, advise the tenant that they will
                                     have the option to move back once the repair works are finalised.




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