Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Basingstoke housing list 'cheats' could face register ban

People who deliberately worsen their living conditions in a bid to jump a housing list queue could be banned from a council register.

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council is considering removing people from the list for a year if they try to get an unfair advantage.

Those with a history of rent arrears, domestic violence or racial harassment could be banned from joining the list temporarily.

A consultation is being held on plans.

'Overcrowded or unhealthy'

Rob Golding, cabinet member for housing and regeneration, said: "It is a matter of fairness, and we think we should do all we reasonably can to make the scheme as fair as possible.

"It might be someone who deliberately moves into somewhere too small so as to be overcrowded or deliberately moves into somewhere that was not up to a legal standard so that they need re-housing because they are somewhere that is unhealthy.

"If we can find a way of discouraging that and being fairer to the people who play by the rules we would consider that."

About 7,000 names are on the council's housing waiting list but fewer than half of those eligible have applied for a home.

Under the proposed shake-up, people who already own a property, have a household income, savings or assets above a set threshold or who work but do not live in the borough may not be accepted on to the register.

Results of the consultation will be taken into account when the council considers its housing policy later this year.

The consultation will end on 27 September.

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