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Summary of Social Housing Assessment 2020

Please read this notice if you have previously applied for Social Housing Supports

The Housing Section of Waterford City & County Council will shortly carry out a Housing Needs Assessment in accordance with Social Housing Assessment (Summary) Regulations, 2016.

  • Q. What is a Housing Needs Assessment?
    A. The Housing Needs Assessment is a review of all approved applicants for social housing supports who are currently on the social housing list with Waterford Council. The information provided by each approved applicant will be re-assessed under the Social Housing Assessment Regulations 2016 taking into account the applicant’s eligibility and need.
  • Q. How will the Local Authority contact approved applicants?
    A. Waterford City & County Council will write to/email/telephone each approved applicant on its social housing list using the current address provided by the applicant. (If you have moved address please contact the Housing Section on 0761 10 24 77 to update your address details.)
  • Q. What will you have to do?
    A. Each approved applicant will be asked to complete a form and provide documentary evidence of any changes to circumstances. The completed form and all relevant supporting documentation should either be posted to the Housing Applications Office, Bailey’s New Street, Waterford or emailed to ssha2020@waterfordcouncil.ie
    • In the interest of public safety during the ongoing pandemic we would urge applicants to return update forms and supporting documentation by post or by email rather than in person at the Customer Services Desk in either Waterford City or in the Civic Offices in Dungarvan.
  • Q. What will happen if I do not return the information requested?
    A. If you fail to return this information within the specified time period your application for social housing may be terminated and therefore you may not be considered for future offers of social housing support.
  • Q. What about HAP, RAS and leasing tenants?
    A. HAP, RAS and leasing tenants will not be contacted for the purposes of this exercise, but their housing applications will remain open and approved.

Housing Applications Service update

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the Council offices both in Waterford City and in Dungarvan have been closed to the public.  However all essential services are still in operation with a reduced number of staff present.

The Housing Applications office has two staff members working in the Waterford office and are assessing new applications, dealing with queries etc.  During this time applications for social housing supports can be either posted in to Housing Applications Office, Waterford City & County Council, Bailey’s New Street, Waterford, can be popped through the letterbox at City Hall (building between the Theatre Royal and the Munster Bar on The Mall) or can be emailed to housingapplications@waterfordcouncil.ie.

Please ensure that you send in the following:

·         Housing Application Form – you need to complete this form in full and sign the declaration on the back of the form

·         Certificate of Income – you need to complete this and have it signed and stamped by Social Welfare or your employer

·         HPL1 form  (anyone over 18 years must complete one of these) due to the Covid-19 emergency and on a temporary basis during this time, you can request that Waterford City & County Council undertakes an electronic process to obtain the information on your behalf from the Revenue Commissioners.  If you wish to avail of this option please contact the Housing Applications Office on 0761 10 2477 and request that the relevant HPL1 information be obtained on your behalf by Waterford City & County Council to support your application for social housing supports.

Once you have these forms completed, refer to Page 3 of the application form and gather all supporting documentation which is relevant to your situation.  You will need the following:

  • Photographic I.D. (current passport, Irish driving licence or social services card)
  • Copy Birth certs for you and anyone who is part of your application
  • PPS numbers for you and anyone who is part of your application
  • Copy Marriage Cert (if you are married)
  • Copy Separation or Divorce Agreement (if you are separated or divorced).  If you do not have such an agreement you need to provide a letter from your solicitor that you are in the process of applying for a Separation or Divorce.
  • Proof of your current address – copy of a recent utility bill and a copy of your current tenancy agreement.  We also need proof that your tenancy is registered with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB).  If you are living with family, we will require a letter from the person who owns the property confirming when you started living there and if you pay anything towards the running of the house.  If you don’t have a utility bill in your name, we need some sort of official correspondence in your name showing this address.
  • Proof of Citizenship or Permission to Remain in Ireland (if you are not originally from Ireland) – copy of current Stamp 4, letter from Dept of Justice and proof of stamp in your current passport.
  • Evidence of Income – along with the Certificate of Income we need 3-4 recent payslips or Social Welfare receipts.  If you are paid through your bank we need 6 months bank statements.
  • If anybody over 18 years in your household was born in the UK or any other country other than Ireland we require proof that you did not own property in that country.
  • If you have overnight access to a child or children we require a copy of the Court Order detailing overnight access arrangements and details of any maintenance payments in respect of this child or children.  If you do not have a Court Order you need to obtain a sworn Affidavit completed by both parents of the child/children.
  • If you are applying on medical grounds we require a current consultant’s report detailing the medical condition.  This will be reviewed by the Area Medical Officer.

If you have any questions in relation to this email please contact the Housing Applications Team on 0761 10 2477 or email housingapplications@waterfordcouncil.ie.

Waterford Council Social Housing Projects update

The Government of Ireland, through the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government has determined that certain social housing projects are deemed essential within the meaning of the COVID-19 health regulations.

In Waterford, certain projects have been identified as meeting the criteria and these sites will re-commence construction activity immediately.

These sites are Knight’s Grange, Lacken, Waterford City (S & K Carey Construction) and  Na Fearnóga, Ballinroad, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford (Nevin Construction).

Additional sites are also expected to recommence in the near future.

In each case the contractor employed by the local authority will undertake the works in accordance with HSE and Government COVID-19-related public health guidelines and recommendations.

In addition, Waterford Council continues with limited maintenance works to their own properties and also with the return to use of void/vacant properties throughout the city and county.

Waterford Council would like to thank the public for their co-operation during this time.

COVID-19 Mortgage Payment Break for Local Authority borrowers

Local Authority home loan borrowers may now apply for a Mortgage Payment Break of up to three months on their home loan if they have experienced a reduction (or anticipate suffering a reduction) in their income, arising from the Covid-19 emergency, and they are unable to make repayments on their home loan.

A mortgage payment break means that the borrower will make no mortgage payments for up to three months.  Additional interest will NOT accrue to the borrowers account during the period of the payment break ensuring that no increased cost will arise.  The monthly repayment following the break will increase to facilitate the repayment of the loan over the remainder of the existing term of the loan.  This facility applies to all local authority home loan products.

ENDS

Service Update: Rent Supplement

The DHPLG advised on Friday afternoon last, that rent supplement is available to those in rented accommodation,  whose income has been affected by COVID19, and who therefore cannot provide for the cost of their accommodation from their own resources.

Persons in private rented accommodation (not currently receiving HAP/RAS) can apply for rent supplement with the DSP where their has been a loss of income or employment due to Covid 19.  Applicants for rent supplement that have a loss of income or employment due to Covid 19 will not be required to make a housing application first to WCCC in order to apply for rent supplement.

These citizens should refer to the DEASP website for further information on rent supplement.

New pilot service in action when applying for social housing

Attention new applicants for social housing …

An improved pilot service is running in Waterford City and in Dungarvan in relation to our applications process.

A person with a complete application form and all relevant and correct documents can now self-book an assessment interview using the Council’s website.

For full details on this new process, please visit http://bit.ly/30kj9Bl or contact the Housing Applications Team on 0761 10 2477.

Waterford City & County Council exceeds National Housing Targets

WATERFORD CITY & COUNTY COUNCIL EXCEEDS HOUSING TARGETS

  • 912 additional households supported in 2018 – 147% of target
  • 294 homes added to the Council’s social housing stock – 18% more than target
  • New stock includes 119 builds
  • 100 leased properties – the highest in the country
  • 598 additional households supported though HAP/RAS

Figures released by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government show 912 additional households were supported though social housing solutions in 2018 in Waterford, representing 147% of the Council’s Rebuilding Ireland target set for the year.

Under the Rebuilding Ireland Programme, annual targets are set for each local authority area. Local authorities are responsible for monitoring and delivering on these targets, including through collaboration with Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs). In 2018, 22 local authorities exceeded their overall Rebuilding Ireland targets.

Reacting to the figures, Ivan Grimes, Director of Housing, Community and Emergency Services said, “Local authorities take the lead in addressing the very difficult issues faced in housing. We are absolutely committed to meeting the challenge, and the 2018 figures leave no doubt that we are delivering on our targets and making crucial progress for the individuals and families we support.

“As the figures show, social housing output is increasing year-on-year. Working in partnership with AHBs and the Department of Housing, the Council will continue to increase our capacity and accelerate our delivery.”

Last year, a total of 294 new homes were added to Waterford’s social housing stock though build, acquisition or long-term leasing. This represents 45 more homes than had been targeted.

Ivan Grimes pointed out that, “Local authority housing, once built or acquired, is state-owned; it is an investment that will continue to provide for those in need of housing into the future. Local authorities currently own and manage more than 130,000 homes around the country, each additional unit provided by local authorities is added to that stock. That is why it is so important to ensure the homes we deliver are well-planned, built to last, of high-quality, and situated within communities and with nearby services.

Last year, Waterford City & Council entered leases for 100 individual properties, the highest number achieved by any local authority. “Using the Repair & Lease Scheme, which this Council originated, and other Long Term Leasing Schemes, we have specifically targeted houses and apartments which were vacant in areas of high demand. Reducing the numbers of vacant houses and bringing them back into use for the provision of social housing is a key priority for the Council.”

“While we build up our stock of social housing, supports like the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP), administered through local authorities, provide us with a flexible way to provide accommodation for those in need.” In 2018, local authorities supported 18,681 additional households though HAP and RAS, 598 of those households were in Waterford.

Integrated Homeless Services Centre to open in Waterford

Waterford City & County Council, in partnership with the HSE/South East Community Healthcare, Focus Ireland and South East Simon Community are to operate an Integrated Homeless Services Centre in Waterford City.

Located at 28 Parnell St. (the former Bank of Ireland branch premises), the agencies will be working as a resource providing a range of support services to those experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

The Waterford initiative follows the success of an integrated and joint approach to delivering and supporting homeless services here in Waterford by the HSE/South East Community Healthcare and Waterford City & County Council. The initiative is an expansion of the multi-agency service being provided currently at Waterside and has an overall objective of improving homeless services in relation to access, quality, service user satisfaction and efficiency.

This initiative augments key objectives for addressing homelessness within the national strategy “Rebuilding Ireland: Action Plan for Housing and Homelessness (2016- 2021)”.   The Waterford Integrated Homeless Services Centre begins operation on Monday 25th February and will be open from 9.30am-12.30pm and 2-4pm each week day (with the exception of Thursday mornings’ later start times of 10.30am).

Ms. Sinéad Breathnach (Regional Homeless Lead, Waterford Council) said “It is a significant venture for the housing authority and we are pleased to be pooling resources at one location with South East Community Healthcare, Focus Ireland Waterford and South East Simon Community to provide a coordinated and integrated response to delivering homeless services to people in need of it”.

A summary of services that will be provided at Waterford Integrated Homeless Services Centre follows:

Waterford City and County Council
The centre will be a new administrative base for the Waterford City and County Council Homeless Services Team. This will be inclusive of the local housing authority’s Homeless Action Team and Homeless Prevention & Support Workers. Staff will be in place at the centre to manage homeless presentations and will operate the Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) Place Finder service from there.

The centre will also incorporate the South East region’s Homeless Leads, the Local Authorities Homeless Lead and the HSE’s Social Inclusion Homeless Lead.   Regional collaboration and management of homeless services will be led from the Integrated Homeless Services Centre in Waterford.

Focus Ireland
Focus Ireland staff will be present to advise and provide information to people who are homeless or at risk due to housing difficulties. The service offers clear advice on rights and entitlements in the areas of housing, the Residential Tenants Board (RTB), support with applying for social welfare entitlements and referrals to appropriate services.

Focus Ireland’s Tenancy Support and Sustainment Service (TSSS) provides dedicated support to households, to help them to secure housing or to continue to sustain their tenancy in their current accommodation. This involves support and home visits by a Focus Ireland TSSS worker. Referrals from both statutory and voluntary agencies can be made through the Waterford Homeless Action Team.

Focus Ireland’s Child Support Service will provide support to children and their families who are experiencing homelessness. Focus Ireland can provide visiting supports to families at their accommodation, targeting one to one work and group work with children and parents. Referrals are made through the Waterford Homeless Action Team.

South East Simon Community
South East Simon Community’s “Housing First” service in Waterford aims to house people experiencing homelessness as quickly as possible. Once housed, South East Simon will continue to provide visiting support for as long as is necessary, so that people have every opportunity to maintain their tenancies. South East Simon’s Housing First service aims to make sure people’s experiences of homelessness are as short as possible and to reduce repeat episodes of homelessness.

South East Simon Community staff work in the belief that providing a person with the security of their own home, along with visiting support, will enable that person to address much more effectively all of the issues that pushed them into homelessness in the first place. South East Simon’s Housing First team seeks out tenancies in self-contained independent housing units for each person it supports.

HSE/South East Community Healthcare
South East Community Healthcare (SECH) provides primary care and community healthcare, mental health, social (elderly and disability) care and health and wellbeing services in counties Carlow, Kilkenny, South Tipperary, Waterford and Wexford. Housing has a large influence on health. People without a home often experience complex and chronic health conditions including mental health and addiction issues and face barriers in accessing appropriate health care.

A Community Mental Health Nurse at the centre will focus on addressing the mental health needs of adults over 18 years who are homeless. The nurse will support homeless services that provide accommodation to service users with mental health issues, in maintaining a relationship and access to Mental Health Services in Waterford City and County. This office will collaborate with homeless services to streamline recovery focused mental health supports for this client group on leaving hospital and ensure the appropriate mental health interventions are delivered to these clients as required in the community.

A Substance Misuse and Homeless Street Outreach Worker will be based in the centre, whose aim is to proactively engage with people experiencing homelessness and rough sleeping within Waterford City – in particular, those who are experiencing substance misuse issues and through early intervention strategies to reduce the level of harm experienced and linked them into existing services and supports.

 

Waterford Cold Weather Initiative

Responding to Rough Sleeping during Cold Weather

Given the demands on current emergency homeless services and the growing waiting list to access services and the Rough Sleeper Units, an additional Cold Weather Initiative (CWI) is open in Waterford City.

The CWI aims to provide a warm and safe place to sleep for those individuals who may not access the current range of homeless services, including persons who tend not to engage with services or the outreach teams.

The CWI will be operational over the winter months during periods of particularly cold or extremely inclement weather.  The operating times will be from 9.30 p.m. – 10.00 a.m.

Waterford Homeless Service providers, Homeless out of hour’s services, the outreach teams and Gardaí are in regular contact with all known rough sleepers to inform them of the location of the CWI and when it is operational.

This is a joint initiative of Waterford City & County Council, Waterford Homeless Action Team, HSE Substance Misuse Services, and South East Simon Community & Waterford Gardaí.

For further information ring 0761 102020 and ask for The Homeless Services Team

Choice Based Lettings System – week ending January 25th 2019

Please be advised that there will be twelve (12) properties available on the Choice Based Lettings Scheme at 9am, Friday 18th January 2019, for a period of 1 week.

  • No’s 19, 20, 21, 22, 27 & 28 Ard Phiarais, Carrickpherish, Waterford.   (2 bedroom flats, ground floor)
  • No’s 23, 24, 29 & 30 Ard Phiarais, Carrickpherish, Waterford.   (2 bedroom flats, first floor)
  • No’s 25, 26 Ard Phiarais, Carrickpherish, Waterford.   (1 bedroom flats, ground floor)

Express an Interest here: http://waterfordcouncil.ie/departments/housing/choice-based-lettings.htm

Note: This scheme operates in accordance with our Scheme of Letting priorities, not by the order in which somebody expresses an interest on the CBL system.