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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Advice for Housing Executive tenants

Advice for Housing Executive tenants
Advice for Housing Executive tenants

Housing Executive tenants can be introductory tenants or secure tenants.  You'll be an introductory tenant for your first 12 months as a tenant of a social landlord, like the Housing Executive or a housing association.  If there haven't been any problems with your tenancy during that 12 month period you'll become a secure tenant and have much stronger legal rights.  It's important that you understand, not just your rights, but also your responsibilities to the Housing Executive. 

The law gives Housing Executive certain rights. These rights will usually be summarised in your tenancy agreement and your tenant's handbook.

While the Housing Executive has certain responsibilities to you, you also have certain responsibilities. These should be outlined in your tenancy agreement and your tenant's handbook.

Your Tenant’s Handbook should explain whether you or the Housing Executive is responsible for repairs.  Ask your local district office for a copy of the handbook if you don’t already have one.

Many problems can be resolved by talking to someone at the Housing Executive. When this doesn't sort out the problem you can use the Housing Executive's formal complaints procedure. There are two stages to the complaints procedure. If you're not happy with the outcome of the formal complaint you might be able to ask the Ombudsman to look at your complaint or even take a Judicial Review against the housing association.

The amount of time you'll have to wait for an offer of housing will normally depend on where you want to live and how many points you have.  Points can be confusing.  This information should help you understand how the system works.

If you fall behind on your rent, the Housing Executive or housing association can take steps to end your tenancy and evict you. Your landlord will need to get a court order before you'll have to leave the property and this will always be a last resort. Your landlord should try to sort the situation out with you before it starts legal action.

Your landlord can only end your tenancy by following the correct process. Secure Housing Executive and housing association tenants can only be evicted if a court believes that they have broken the tenancy agreements. It's easier for a landlord to evict an introductory tenant, but the landlord still has to get a court order. Think carefully and get advice before you take any action to end your tenancy. It can be difficult to get a new social tenancy if you've given one up.

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