Questions and answers about temporary (transitional) accommodation
How can you prepare?
Remember that this is an emergency provision for housing whilst we investigate your homeless application. It is important that we make best use of transitional accommodation for all our residents in need, which means that on occasion you may have to move to another placement at very short notice – possibly within 24 hours. You will be expected to accept any placement offered, or alternatively make arrangements to find your own accommodation.
You will need to provide us with ID, which will be reviewed within 7 days of your placement. If you are unable to verify your identity at this time, we may withdraw the offer of placement and this may affect your homeless application. If you are unsure what type of ID would be accepted, please speak to us.
When you leave your transitional accommodation placement an inspection will be carried out to ensure that there is no damage to the property. Any damage discovered will need to be put right before you leave the property. Any damage discovered after you have left will result in you being re-charged for the cost of the repairs.
What will be the living/housing costs in transitional accommodation?
All households have to pay for their transitional accommodation. The charges may vary according to the type and size of the accommodation. You can apply for Housing Benefit to help cover these costs if you are eligible.
The costs in transitional accommodation may include:
- rent (paid weekly)
- service charge (in hostel style accommodation, paid weekly)
- Council Tax
- utilities e.g. water, gas, electric
- contents insurance for your belongings
- laundry wash tokens
- public transport
- TV licence
- furniture storage
When moving on from transitional accommodation, you will continue to be charged for the property until the keys are returned to us. You will also incur charges for failure to return your accommodation keys or entrance fob/cards.
What happens to my belongings?
Though it depends on the type of transitional accommodation you are offered, it is likely that most of your furniture will not fit, therefore it is your responsibility to arrange and pay for storage. For example, there may be room for some of your own furniture in a self-contained property, but in a hostel style transitional accommodation it is very likely you will have to find storage elsewhere. It is your responsibility to arrange contents insurance for any of your possessions kept in transitional accommodation.
When you leave your placement, anything left behind will be removed from the property and stored for a period of 7 days. At the end of this 7-day period any items left behind will be disposed of and you will be charged for the costs for removal, storage, and disposal.
Can I have pets?
Except for service animals, transitional accommodation properties are not pet-friendly. if you take a pet into a property where they are not permitted, you risk being asked to move out and not offered any further transitional accommodation.
Can I have overnight guests?
For everyone’s safety and wellbeing, no overnight visitors are allowed in transitional accommodation. Anyone whose name is not on the homeless application is not permitted to stay in the property overnight.
What is a breach of licence? How could I lose my transitional accommodation?
The license agreement that you sign when you move into transitional accommodation will explain the behaviours that are required by everyone named on the homeless application. We operate a zero-tolerance policy in terms of inappropriate behaviour towards our staff which includes our contractors such as security, cleaning and repairs staff. If you or your household behave unacceptably, breaking the rules in the agreement, you could be asked to leave, and you will not be offered any further transitional accommodation. This also goes for not keeping up with your rent / service charge payments. If you are waiting on your Housing Benefit application to be assessed, it is your responsibility to ensure we have everything we need to assess your claim, e.g. wage slips, documents, etc. and you should still keep up with your token payments while you wait.
How will you help me avoid becoming homeless again?
We offer tenancy training modules, which you will receive a certificate for when completed. These modules are designed to help you practice and develop skills to maintain a tenancy. We do not want to see you homeless again and want you to move forward into settled housing with more knowledge and confidence. You can speak to us regarding these sessions.
Can I get help with costs?
You can make an application for Housing Benefit to help you cover your weekly rent charge. You will be expected to make token payments towards your rent while your Housing Benefit application is assessed.
You may also apply for Council Tax support to help cover your Council Tax charge. Your entitlement depends on your circumstances.
How long will you be in transitional accommodation
There is no limit for how long you may be in transitional accommodation. The amount of time that you spend in transitional accommodation may depend on:
- what is happening with your homeless application
- the type and size of longer-term housing property that your require
- how many people are in your household
- the availability of appropriate longer-term housing