Stock new home 4

Home Moves Incentive Scheme

The Home Moves Plus Cash Incentive Scheme aims to:

  • Help you move to a smaller home
  • Encourage tenants under-occupying properties to downsize to a home more suited to their needs and their budget by reducing any financial barriers to moving
  • Encourage mutual exchange rather than transfer as a way of downsizing
  • Release larger accommodation for households in housing need
  • Release pre-cast reinforced concrete (PRC) properties, which are expensive to
    maintain.

Qualifying for the scheme

Mutual exchange

If you want to downsize by swapping your home for a smaller one, you will be considered if:

  • You are eligible for a mutual exchange under the mutual exchange policy and procedure
  • You are under-occupying your home by at least one bedroom
  • You have no outstanding debts with Magna or agree to clear any outstanding debts before a move takes place or agree to clear any outstanding debts in full by deducting any monies owed from the incentive payment
  • You exchange homes with another tenant of a social landlord within Somerset or Devon
  • You move into your new home immediately and do not give notice on the property without moving in
  • Neither home is under-occupied or over-crowded as a result of the move
  • Overcrowded tenants who complete a mutual exchange with a downsizing social tenant in West Somerset will also be considered.

Transfers

If you want to downsize by transferring, you will be considered if you:

  • • Are under-occupying your current home by at least one bedroom
  • Live in general needs housing
  • Have no outstanding debts with Magna or agree to clear any outstanding debts before a move takes place or agree to clear any outstanding debts in full by deducting any monies owed from the incentive payment.
  • You will also be considered if you are transferring out of a ‘pre-cast reinforced concrete’ house regardless of whether you are downsizing or not. If you are not sure whether you have a PRC property, you can ask your housing officer.

Exemptions from the scheme

The main exemptions are:

  • Anyone moving by mutual exchange from a PRC property
  • Applications from tenants in a 4+ bedroom home needing 2 bedroom or fewer, eg a single person or couple living in a 4 bedroom house will not qualify for a payment under the scheme by applying to move to a 3 bedroom house
  • Tenants downsizing by mutual exchange where the tenants moving in are not fully occupying the property, ie someone is still under-occupying.
  • Other exemptions may apply.

Applying

Qualifying tenants wanting to do a mutual exchange must apply for the exchange through our mutual exchange procedure. We will help you fill in the forms needed, or you can ask the local authority to help if you prefer.

We have a Home Moves Plus service, which can assist downsizing tenants with the whole moving process.

The incentive scheme payment

We will work out payments by comparing the size of the home moved from to the size of the home moved to. You may receive between £400 - £1600. Please ask your housing officer for more information. You are expected to use this money towards the cost of moving. In certain cases, it can be used towards services such as removal vans or skip hire.

We aim to pay the incentive payment to you within 21 days of the move and after any expenses have been deducted, including any previous outstanding debt to us or outstanding housing benefit payments. The incentive payment will be made by Bankers Automated Clearing Services (BACS) or cheque.