A Mutual Exchange takes place when two or more housing association tenants agree to exchange (swap) their properties. Tenants agreeing to exchange homes must move into each other’s homes, as exchanges into empty properties are not allowed. Tenants must also hold an Assured tenancy and landlords can refuse to allow exchanges to progress in certain instances. You can exchange with:
When you exchange, your existing tenancy will come to an end, and a new one will begin with your new landlord.
You must find your swap partner yourself and you must ask your landlord for permission before making the swap. To find your swap partner, you will need to advertise as widely as possible and a good place to start could be to register with Homeswapper. You may also wish to register with House Swap Wales.
You can mutual exchange to any area in the UK and you may go up or down one bedroom providing it does not cause over-crowding for either you or your swap partner. In addition, where an exchange may create under-occupation, you will need to be aware that your Housing Benefit entitlement may reduce as a result of under occupation charges known as the spare room subsidy or ‘bedroom tax’.
You must also have a clear rent account and your property must be in a decent condition. However, if you have rent arrears and are considering an exchange you may wish to discuss this with your landlord as they may be able to provide you with further advice on this.