I've found a swap - what next?
You’ve found someone to swap with on HomeSwapper.ie – congratulations! So, what happens next? We will show you some of the things you need to do in order to move into your new home.
Inform your Local Authority
To let your Local Authority know you have found someone to swap and to apply for an Inter-Transfer (home swap) go to your HomeSwapper dashboard and click on the “Found someone to swap with?” box.
Before you can apply you must confirm some important criteria, e.g. you’ve visited each other’s homes.
If all these conditions are true, tick the boxes to confirm this and click “Continue” to apply.
Finally, you’ll need to enter some details about the person you want to swap with including their name, address and who their Local Authority is.
Clicking “Send” will close your HomeSwapper.ie account and notify your Local Authority who will get in touch to start the Inter-Transfer application process.
All tenants are required to complete a mutual exchange form, just ask your Local Authority and they’ll send you the details. It will usually be in paper form rather than one you can fill out online and it will ask for details about your home and the tenant you want to swap with.
Once you’ve filled it out, return the completed form to your Local Authority.
Things you need to check
Remember that you’re accepting the property ‘as seen’, so do make sure you have a few viewings during the exchange process. Ask lots of questions during these visits – this could be your new home and it’s really important you’re happy with it. Things to think about are:
- Condition of the home – decoration, layout, state of repair
- Location – make sure you visit at different times of day, evening and at the weekend so you can get a feel for the area
- Transport – is there parking? Are you close enough to public transport?
- Amenities – where’s the nearest supermarket? What are the local schools like?
- Neighbours – what are the neighbours like? Are there any disputes? Visiting several times can help you assess the situation.
The swap approval process
During the swap approval process, the Local Authority may carry out the following visits:
They will assess the condition of your home and look for any damage or alterations you may have made.
They’ll discuss any items you might be leaving or taking with you, such as fridge-freezers or cookers.
They’ll also go into tenancy matters with you and any rent arrears.
Health & Safety checks
Your Local Authority will complete a thorough health & safety gas and electrical check – anything that needs to be fixed should be identified and sorted out before your move.
Property report and review
Following the visits, a property report will be sent to the other swapper to sign and return. Your Local Authority will check your rent account and look at any conditions they have asked to be put right. A clear rent account will be required to complete the swap. They’ll also confirm if the property has passed or failed the health & safety checks.
If you want to move to another Local Authority area, tenancy references may be required.
Your Local Authority will send a tenancy reference to your new Local Authority. They will confirm in writing their decision to grant you consent to exchange and will then ask you and your swap partner to agree a date to move. You should each notify your Local Authority of the agreed date but be aware that they might require 5 working days’ notice to prepare all the paperwork.
All Local Authorities involved in the exchange must give their consent before you can move. If you move before you have signed the ‘Deed of Assignment’ or without your Local Authority’s permission they will ask you to move back and you could risk losing your home, so please don’t attempt to do this!
You have a date
Great – you’re almost there!
Once you have a move date, you will be asked to arrange a time and date that you and your swap partner can attend your Local Authority’s offices to sign the ‘Deed of Assignments.’ This appointment is usually arranged for the middle of the week before a move the following weekend, so if you’re planning to move on the Saturday the meeting will take place in the week running up to that day. Your assigned tenancy will then begin the following Monday.
At this meeting, you’ll be required to bring your original tenancy agreement and two forms of ID, (please include one photo ID).
If you receive housing benefit please remember to advise your local office you are moving, as you may need to complete a new form or change of circumstances form.
You’ll be expected to discuss all moving arrangements with your swap partner. Once you’ve both signed the’ Deed of Assignment’ it is legally binding and you are expected to move on the date that’s been agreed with your Local Authority. You, or your swap partner can pull out at any time before this document is signed with no penalties.
Enjoy your new home!