Below is an alphabetical list of words relating to Keyways with explanations and a brief description.

Accredited landlord

A private landlord that has been accredited by a recognised Landlord Accreditation Scheme.


Adjustments to a property to assist a disabled member of the household access the property or facilities such as a;

  • Stairlift
  • Wetroom / Level Access Shower
  • Level Access Shower
  • Ramp

Affordable rent

Rented housing let by registered providers of housing to households who are eligible.  Affordable Rent is not subject to the national rent regime but is subject to other rent controls that require a rent of no more than 80 per cent of the local private rented market rent.

Allocation scheme

This explains the rules that determine how North Northamptonshire Council will allocate social/affordable housing properties.


A person who applies to register onto the Keyways housing register.


We will categorise Keyways applications into one of five bands which reflect the level of priority for housing.  These bands are A, B, C, D and E.  Applications in Band A have the highest level of priority.


The term used when an applicant expresses their interest in a property advertised on Keyways.

Choice-based lettings

A scheme like Keyways that allows applicants to express a choice about where they want to live from within their eligible properties.


The process whereby a social housing tenant has to temporarily move out of their home into another property owned by their landlord to enable the landlord to complete essential repairs/maintenance to the property.

Declaration form

The main and joint applicant (if applicable) must agree to this in order to show their understanding and acceptance to adhere to the North Northamptonshire Keyways Housing Allocation Scheme. It also provides the local authority permission to make further checks in order to fully assess the application.

Direct match

In exceptional circumstances, a Keyways landlord may allocate a property to an applicant without it being advertised.  Reasons may include but not limited to;

  • Applicant requires multiple adaptations
  • Applicant requires an adaptation that is limited within our housing stock
  • Housing a successor who is under occupying a property

Effective date

The date at which a Keyways application is registered or escalated into a higher band.


Eligibility determines who is eligible to, or is allowed to join the Keyways register under the provisions of the Housing Act 1996 and related legislation.  A person who is not eligible will not be able to join the register or to bid for properties.  Eligible applicants will then be advised what type of property (i.e. size) they are eligible to bid for.


Your personal bid history will be available to you when you log into your account on the Keyways website.

Fixed term tenancy

Tenancies granted by Keyways landlords to new tenants that are for a fixed length of time.  Tenancies will not normally be granted for less than five years, except for those who have not held a tenancy before, where a one year starter or introductory tenancy may be used.

Habitual residence test

The test looks at whether the applicant’s residence in the United Kingdom is of a settled nature. For example, it looks at the length and continuity of residence, work/work prospects or family ties.

Intermediate affordable housing

Housing at below market price.  These can include shared equity products (e.g. HomeBuy / Shared Ownership), and other low cost homes for sale.

Keyways landlord

North Northamptonshire Council, registered housing providers (housing associations) and accredited private landlords.

Keyways nomination agreement

An agreement that North Northamptonshire Council have with some registered housing providers that stipulates the proportion of lettings to be made through the Keyways Scheme.

Letting/Bidding cycle

New properties will be advertised each week from 00:01am on a Thursday to midnight on a Tuesday.  There are no social/affordable properties advertised on a Wednesday.

Local connection

Applicants to Keyways will require a connection to North Northamptonshire in order to qualify.  They must demonstrate clear connection links such as residency, employment or immediate family members.

Mutual exchange

A swap of accommodation between two social housing tenants that relies on each tenant moving permanently into the other persons/tenants property which must be approved by the respective landlord(s).

Non-statutorily homeless

A term that refers to homeless households to whom the council does not have a duty to make an offer of settled housing.


The term used when a local housing authority provides, from its housing register, the name and details of an applicant to a landlord for an offer of housing.

Open bid

This term indicates that the property advertised is still within its current bidding cycle or has not yet been shortlisted and/or allocated to an applicant.


Each week Keyways will publish information on accepted offers of accommodation from previous advertising cycles.

Private rented sector offer

A final offer of a suitable property in the private rented sector in order to discharge their duty under the homeless legislation.

Property leased to a support agency

A property owned by a Keyways Landlord but is managed by a support agency. As a result the re-letting of this property is the responsibility of the support agency and not the Keyways Landlord.

Qualifying person/criteria

A local housing authority can decide what classes of persons are, or are not, qualifying persons for joining the Keyways Register. Non qualifying persons include but not limited to, applicants that have demonstrated previous unacceptable behaviour such as anti social behaviour or housing related debt.

Queue position

When placing a bid, Keyways will calculate your position in the shortlist as at the time of the bid.  This can alter (go up or down) throughout the letting cycle (Thursday-Tuesday).  The higher up the shortlist for the property you are the more likelihood there is of being allocated it.  On occasion, an advert will specify if there is a preference criteria therefore the queue position may be affected. i.e. adapted properties will be offered to those requiring the adaptations in the first instance.

Rechargeable repairs

Damage or negligence by a tenant (or the tenant’s family/visitors) to a property during a tenancy.

Registered provider (RP)

A housing association or a not-for-profit company registered with Homes England to provide social or affordable housing.

Sheltered housing

Housing for older people with a support need, disabled or those unable to work because of a medical condition but are able to lead independent lives with some assistance.  Consists of units/complexes and clusters of bungalows.


A list of applicants that have expressed an interest in a particular property advertised on Keyways.


Term used when an applicant has bid on a property and been bypassed.  Reasons for being bypassed may include but not limited to;

  • The property is unsuitable for the applicants needs
  • Enquiries reveal the applicant may no longer be eligible/qualify i.e. no local connection, debt to a Council or unsatisfactory tenancy reference
  • Local lettings policy or priority criteria i.e. sheltered accommodation/age restriction
  • Adaptations suitable for disabled clients

Social housing

Rented housing restricted by national rent controls owned by a local authority or registered provider such as Housing Associations.

Statutorily homeless

A term that refers to households to whom a local housing authority has a duty to make a permanent offer of housing.

Succession of tenancy

When a tenant dies, the tenancy may automatically pass to any joint tenants/spouse/partner as long as they were living with the tenant at the time of death and for at least 12 months before, and as long as the tenancy hasn’t been subject to a previous succession already. Anyone who takes over the tenancy in this way is called a successor. Any permission to succeed should be formally confirmed by the landlord of that property.