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Keyways Website Upgrade - 16th March 2022

Published: Monday 28 February 2022

Keyways are excited to advise you of some new changes coming soon to our Keyways website available at www.keyways.org.uk

The planned date for the Keyways website upgrade to go live is:

                                                        Wednesday 16th March 2022

This date falls on a Wednesday which is our usual weekly administration day when no properties are available to bid on.

By upgrading our system on this day, we hope to reduce any inconvenience to our customers.  It is anticipated that the Keyways website will be unavailable for one day on the above date. We expect the upgraded website to be available to our customers again from Thursday 17th March 2022 in time for the usual weekly bidding cycle.

What changes will affect me?

The Keyways website will have some new features and increased security and we are pleased to share details of these with you below.

SECURITY

Currently your account requires a login reference number and a memorable date.  As an extra layer of security, when you first login following the upgrade, you will be asked to set a password.  The password must consist of at least 10 characters including 2 lower case letters, 2 upper case letters and 2 numbers.  Symbols and punctuation are not allowed.

In addition to this, following the upgrade all our customers will be able to request that their login reference be emailed to them, and reset their memorable date and password via the Keyways website.  You will no longer need to contact the Keyways team for assistance with forgotten details and will receive an immediate response via email.

UPLOADING DOCUMENTS

We are excited to introduce a new feature that we hope will assist our customers to provide documents in support of their application as easily as possible.  You will no longer need to hand deliver, post, or email them to the Keyways team for action.  Any documents uploaded via the Keyways website using this new feature will immediately be attached to your application. A Keyways officer will be alerted to newly uploaded documents to undertake any verification or assessment of your application that may be required following receipt of the document(s).

Please note that not all documents provided will initiate contact from a Keyways officer or result in a change in your Keyways band.  Should any changes be made to your application following the provision of new information you will be contacted.

There are two new ways to do upload documents:

  1. As part of the online housing application form there is a new page to enable our customers to upload documents immediately as part of their initial Keyways application.

  1. For customers who already have a Keyways application, this new feature can be found on your “My Account” page once you have logged in.

     

Documents that are essential as part of any application are:

  • Photographic identification for the main and joint applicant (passport, driving licence, identify card or a birth certificate along with a passport sized photo)
  • Where applicable, Home Office documentation confirming the immigration status of the main and joint applicant
  • Where applicable, for those awarded a Pre-Settled Status under the European Union Settlement Scheme, proof of a right to reside
    •  Households with Settled Status will be contacted for their EUSS share code.

Other supporting documents that you may wish to provide but which are not considered essential unless requested by a Keyways officer may be:

  • Proof of previous/current employment
  • Proof of home ownership including proof of a sale or transfer within the last five years for example, proof of market value, equity held, and completion statement
  • Proof of any housing related debts declared on this form and proof of re-payment plans in place
  • Medical evidence to support a medical need for housing for example, an Occupational Therapist report, supporting letters from a GP or other medical professional, and proof of disability benefits such as DLA/PIP)
  • Formal notice to leave your current accommodation such as a Section 21 Notice

There will be a list of categories for you to choose from to define what type of document you are providing, such as ID, Proof of Address, Medical etc.

AVERAGE WAITING TIME (HEX)

Another new and exciting feature will be added to the Keyways website during the upgrade that allows our customers to see average waiting times for types of properties in different locations.  This can be found by clicking on the “Properties and recent lets search” of the Keyways website.

Once you click here, you will see a new tab called ‘Average Waiting Times’.  From here you will be able to filter to a time period and geographical area including the whole of North Northamptonshire.  On the next page you will have additional filters by clicking on “Refine Results”.  You can filter your search by the number of bedrooms, property type and Keyways Priority Band.

You will notice that each geographical area is represented by a hexagon which you can select to obtain more details.

This new function is for guidance and information only and is based upon past lettings data*. It does not provide a guaranteed waiting time for any of our applicants.

*Please note that the data used for this function will be from November 2010 for Corby, Kettering and Wellingborough as those sovereign councils had a joint system and sub-regional choice-based lettings scheme in place before we became North Northamptonshire Council on 1 April 2021.  The data for East Northants lettings will be from 1 April 2021.

EMAIL & TELEPHONE

As digital services continue to improve, the quickest and easiest way for Keyways to contact our customers is by email or telephone.  We kindly ask you to log into your Keyways account and ensure that you have provided these contact details or update your details if they have changed.

Once you are logged in you will be on your “My Account” page and the contact details are on the right-hand side with a link to update your details.

We hope that you will find the enhanced features of our Keyways website helpful and thank you for your patience on Wednesday 16th March. If you experience any difficulty using the upgraded system, please contact our Keyways Teams.  Contact details can be found on our Contact Us page on www.keyways.org.uk

North Northamptonshire Housing Allocation Scheme Consultation

Published: Wednesday 4 November 2020

Have your say on how the new Council should allocate social housing. 

People are being invited to give their views on proposals for how social housing will be allocated across North Northamptonshire from spring next year.

On 1 April 2021 the new North Northamptonshire Council will replace the existing district and borough councils in Corby, East Northants, Kettering and Wellingborough, which each currently have their own rules for deciding how council and housing association properties are allocated in their areas. Work has therefore been taking place to combine these into a new draft Housing Allocation Scheme that will cover all of North Northamptonshire from day one of the new Council.

Residents, tenants and housing associations are among those being encouraged to give their feedback on these proposals as part of a six-week consultation starting today (4 November) and running until 15 December.

Their views will help to shape a final version of the scheme to then be considered by North Northamptonshire’s Shadow Councillors early next year.

To view the draft proposals and complete a questionnaire, visit https://futurenorthants.citizenspace.com/

The draft scheme sets out proposals for who would be eligible and could apply for social housing in North Northamptonshire, along with how the new Council would process applications, assess and manage people’s housing needs and determine who should have priority for social housing.

The draft Allocation Scheme would also keep a Choice Based Lettings approach to allocating social housing, which is already used by the existing North councils and allows applicants to choose and bid for properties they prefer.

Councillor Russell Roberts, Leader of the North Northamptonshire Shadow Authority and Housing Portfolio Holder said: “Supporting the welfare and needs of residents across north Northamptonshire will be at the heart of our new Council and the way we allocate housing will play a key role in helping us do this.

“It’s really important that people give their views on these proposals so that we can shape the best scheme possible for our communities. I would encourage everyone with an interest in these issues to get involved and give their feedback.”

The draft Housing Allocation Scheme can be viewed online, along with an accompanying questionnaire to complete at https://futurenorthants.citizenspace.com/. Alternatively comments can be emailed to futurenorthants@northamptonshire.gov.uk or in writing to the following address:

Allocations Consultation, Future Northants, c/o Kettering Borough Council, Bowling Green Road, Kettering, NN15 7QX.

For more information or to request paper copies of the questionnaire call 01536 410333.

The deadline for responses is on Tuesday, 15 December, 2020.

COVID-19

Published: Thursday 4 June 2020

Keyways have added a new COVID-19 section under the Information tab to keep customers updated with relevant information relating to Allocations and Lettings during the Covid-19 pandemic. We will keep this page up to date to include the latest government guidance on house moves and lettings, as well as any changes to our procedures due to the public health emergency.  

Corby and Kettering Borough Council Landlord & Tenancy Services teams have recently added information which explains the amended viewing and sign-up process that they are following for new lettings of their council properties.  Information from other social landlords will be added shortly.  

In the meantime if you have any questions regarding our way of working during Covid-19 then please contact the local authority that manages your Keyways application. Our contact details can be found here.

 

Hamilton House, Kettering - Coming soon

Published: Tuesday 18 February 2020

Phase 2 of the Hampden Crescent refurbishment, Hamilton House, is due to complete by the end of May 2020.

The development will comprise 18 one and two bedroom flats which will include 2 two bedroom ground floor fully wheelchair accessible flats and 2 one bedroom ground floor disabled adapted flats. The remaining 14 flats will be a mix of one and two bedroom flats.

All flats will be modernised throughout to a high standard to mirror the success of Montrose House, which was completed last year.

Working in partnership with Lovells, the building itself will be refurbished with a new air-flow district heating system, insulation and sound proofing throughout, photo-voltaic panels on the roof and a modern external finish. The flat interiors will benefit from modern kitchens and bathrooms and a smart new look to ensure they are perfect for modern living.

An Open Day is being held at Kettering Borough Council on Thursday 5th March from 2-8pm where you will be able to find out more information, view floor plans, ask any questions and find out how to be considered for an allocation at the scheme.

The flats will be advertised on Keyways at the beginning of March and ready to move into around June.

*Image of phase 1 of Hampden Crescent, Montrose House. Hamilton House will mirror design.

 

New Rent to Buy Scheme - LAKELAND MEADOW, PENRITH DRIVE

Published: Thursday 21 November 2019

 

 

 

 

  • Are you renting privately, from the Council, or a Housing Association, or living with relatives?
  • Do you need to move and hope to buy a home in the future?

A new Rent to Buy in Wellingborough is NOW taking applications.

Rent to Buy gives you the chance to save up for a deposit by paying 20% less than market rent while living in the home you plan to buy.

The Rent to buy homes on Lakeland Meadow Penrith Drive could be perfect for local people who:

  • are in work or training;
  • have been saving for a deposit or would be able to do so

3 Brand new energy efficient 2 bedroom house available to move into in January 2020.

Greatwell Homes (a locally based Housing Association operating in and around Northamptonshire), in partnership with the Borough Council of Wellingborough is giving priority to applicants who:

• meet the eligibility assessment;

• have a local connection; and

• are on the Wellingborough Housing register; or

• are moving out of a social housing tenancy.

If your application is accepted, you will be granted a 6 month Assured Shorthold renewable tenancy, month by month, and the rent will be set at 80% of the market rent. This will include any service charges and maintenance

until you can afford to buy your home.  After 5 years you will have the option to buy your home for the market value.

Other Terms and Conditions apply - Please apply in good time - There is no guarantee of an offer.

How to Apply

For further information on Rent to Buy at Lakeland Meadow Penrith Drive, Wellingborough and an application form please go to www.greatwellliving.org.uk/rent-to-buy.htm or email: living@greatwellhomes.org.uk ; or telephone 01933 234450.

If you want to be considered for one of these houses, then please submit your application form before 5pm on 24th December 2019

Anyone who qualifies, and not offered a property in the first phase (Or submits an application after 24th December 2019) will be added to the waiting list for future Rent to buy properties in Wellingborough.

We can also let you know of any similar schemes in Northamptonshire.

Assessment Criteria / Determining Qualifying Applicants

Greatwell Homes will be responsible for completing the following validations to determine qualifying applicants:

• an in-depth affordability assessment of every applicant. This will include a credit check and checks on income, debts, savings and outgoings as well as landlord or mortgage references

• a conclusive Local Connection check. This will include checks on address, employment and/or care and support needs or provision

Prioritising applicants

Greatwell Homes will be responsible for awarding priority to Qualifying Applicants, shortlisting and allocating to vacant Rent to Buy units in the following order (i.e. all Qualifying Applicants who meet criteria (a) will be considered first no matter their source, then criteria (b) etc.)

  1. a. applicants to whom Borough Council of Wellingborough has accepted a
  2. b. applicants on Borough Council of Wellingborough Housing Register in the Emergency Band
  3. c. applicants on Borough Council of Wellingborough Housing Register in Band A
  4. d. applicants on Borough Council of Wellingborough Housing Register in Band B
  5. e. applicants who are surrendering a social housing tenancy in the Borough Council of Wellingborough Area to downsize
  6. f. applicants who are surrendering a social housing tenancy in the Borough Council of Wellingborough   
  7. g. all other Applicants who fulfil the Qualifying Criteria for in Wellingborough (including those who do not have a reasonable preference as per the BCW Allocations Policy, and who make a direct application to Greatwell Homes).

Where there are insufficient applicants with a Local Connection to the Borough Council of Wellingborough, Greatwell Homes will agree a suitable alternative approach with Borough Council of Wellingborough for the letting of remaining properties (such an agreement will not be unreasonably withheld).

Other Terms and Conditions apply - Please apply in good time - There is no guarantee of an offer.

Please note: Rent to Buy operates outside Borough Council of Wellingborough’s Allocations and Choice Based Lettings scheme and is not subject to the same legislation.

Greatwell Homes will allocate all properties in accordance with the Lakeland Meadow Rent to Buy Lettings Policy and deal with any complaints via their Formal Complaints Procedure.