An exchange (swap) is when:
- You are a Lister tenant and you wish to exchange flats with another tenant, either in Lister, or in a council, or housing association or co-operative tenancy. OR
- You are a tenant of a council or housing association or co-operative and you wish to exchange with a Lister tenant.
If you wish to transfer from a Lister flat to another empty Lister flat see our Transfers page.
If you wish to do a move to another housing association or co-operative or council empty flat in Edinburgh , you need to apply to EdIndex – see our How to apply page. Some housing associations are not part of EdIndex and have their own allocation systems.
Arranging an exchange
There are several ways of finding someone to do an exchange with – such as:
- Register with www.houseexchange.org.uk This is a UK wide website that is run by the Clarion Housing Group based in England. You can look for matches in Edinburgh.
- Put up / look out for notices in newsagents, supermarkets, community centres.
- Advertise in a local paper or online.
Once you have identified a possible person to exchange with, each of you needs to apply to exchange to your own landlord. Each landlord will also consider the person you wish to swap with, as they would become the landlord’s new tenant. Usually they need to fill in a form for the other landlord.
Both tenants and both landlords must agree to the exchange and if any one party does not then the exchange cannot proceed. There may be a number of reasons why one party may not give approval and we may not be able to divulge an exact reason for reasons of data protection and confidentiality.
For the tenant(s) who would be coming into Lister (if it is an exchange between a Lister tenant and an external tenant) then they must apply for, be accepted and take up membership of the Co-operative. This is a condition of a Lister offer / tenancy and will not be waived, ever. The membership process is separate from the exchange decision process.
Household size and property size
No overcrowding or under-occupation is allowed. The sizes of the properties involved must be appropriate for the size of the respective households. This will be decided by Lister (and the landlord of the other tenancy).
Conditions of exchanges
The general conditions for all moves are:
- All occupants must move out and vacant possession given to Lister. If only part of the household seek rehousing then it is not an exchange, and they should apply through EdIndex for rehousing. Lister office staff can give advice on this.
- In requesting an exchange both tenants are responsible for accepting each other’s flat in its current decorative condition. Having said that people will be far more willing to consider an exchange with you if your flat and decoration is in good condition.
- A maintenance inspection will be carried out before you leave to assess the flat.
- It is hoped that tenants requesting exchanges will have a clear rent account. Applicants with rent arrears may be considered for exchange to lower cost housing if this would assist their financial position. They must be keeping up with an arrears repayment agreement.
Other points of note
- If an exchange is refused then you will be advised of the general reason and of the appeals procedure.
- An exchange may be approved with specific conditions that apply to one or both parties. These must be met to the satisfaction of the landlord applying the conditions, before the exchange can actually proceed. It may be that the conditions apply not to you but to the other person.
- No move shall take place until the exchange is given written approval by both landlords.
The Lister staff can provide additional advice so please contact us for assistance.