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Hackney Bidding Checklist


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Changes to Bands since April 2014


As of the April 2014, there is no longer a Reserve Band for new cases, if you are found to be adequately housed with no housing need you will not qualify to join the Council’s Waiting List. Tenants or applicants aged of 55 & over can qualify for the Council’s waiting list to enable them to participate in Mutual Exchange and allow them to bid for Older Persons Housing respectively. 

Please remember to ensure your contact and household details are up to date before placing a bid.

Average Waiting Times


 Average Waiting times for Hackney


Number on waiting list by band
Number on wating list by bedroom numbers


Direct Offers – Bids

All properties are advertised including those the Council intend to use for urgent cases. You can place a bid on any property advertise, suitable for your household needs, even if the property could potential be used for an urgent case. 

What this means for you

Occasionally  you will see the top bidder for a property states ‘Direct Offer’ this means that an urgent case has been offered this property, however, should the urgent case refuse the property it will be offered to the applicants who have place a bid for the property. Examples of urgent cases include:

• Decantees – Tenants whose homes are due to be demolished (Regeneration, major disrepair/uninhabitable)
• Homeless Cases – Where  temporary housing is no longer available
• Underoccupiers – Tenants whose homes are now too large for their household needs and those affected by the bedroom tax
• A-Social cases – Applicant and tenants who need to move due to threat to life or are at risk from domestic or gang related violence etc

Medical cases – applicant or tenant home no longer suitable due to ill-health

Overlooking your Bids 


In some cases the bid you make for a property may be overlooked and you will not be put forward for a viewing for that property. In most cases the reason you are overlooked is straight forward:


• You have placed a bid for  a wheelchair accessible, an adapted or specialist unit and you do not have a medical priority
• You have accepted another property since placing the bid
• You have rent arrears
• Your circumstances have changed since placing the bid
•  Your application has not yet been reassessed
• Your priority has been reduced or bedroom requirements have changed
• Your case has not been reviewed i.e. urgent band 6 months, homeless band 1 year general band 2 years.
• Further verification is required
• Your application has been activated, in error (system error)
• The property is unsuitable for  your assessed medical needs

Viewing Delays


If you have bid for a property and you have not been invited to view there could be several reasons:


• You have changed your contact details
• New builds - units on new developments are advertised 6 to 8 weeks before the properties are ready to let.
• The property is not ready to let i.e. requires major repair works and the Lettings Team were not aware of the works, at the time of advertising.
• Property is not ready to let

Preference for Housing Moves

As part of the Mayors Mobility scheme Hackney advertises a small percentage of its properties on Housing Moves, this scheme allows Council and Registered Providers tenants to move outside of their own borough into another London boroughs.

Should the property not be accepted the Council will advertise these properties through ChoiceHomes with the following text ‘Preference given to Housing Moves Tenants’.

If the property is not accepted by a Housing Moves tenant, then Hackney tenants/applicants will be shortlisted.
Fresh Start and Seaside and Country Homes


It you are interested in renting privately outside of London the Fresh Start Scheme, maybe of interest to you.

• We will pay your first month’s rent and deposit (up to £2000)
• You do not have to be a Council tenant to qualify 
• We will pay £500 towards your removal costs

You must be on the Councils waiting list in and be in either the urgent, homeless or general band to be considered for the scheme. Please call the Lettings Initiative/Regeneration Team for further details - 0208 356 5751, 0208 356 5605 or 0208 356 5114.


If you are living in a Council or Registered Provider property that is big for your household needs, you have 1 or more spare bedrooms and have been hit by the bedroom tax you may qualify for a financial incentive to move to a smaller property. The amount you receive will depend on the size of property you are giving up and the demand the Council has for your property. You may also receive an incentive towards your removals costs or we can carry out the move for you. Please call the Lettings Initiative/Regeneration Team for more details on this scheme: 0208 356 5605, 0208 356 5751 or 0208 356 5114, 0208 356 7299




To contact us

Kiosks and free computer access

You can get assistance with bidding at the following places:


Council Locations


Other Locations

  • Cashiers Office 2 Hillman Street E8 1FB
  • Reception Hackney Town Hall, Mare Street, E8 1EA
  • Reception, Christopher Addison House (can assist with bidding) 72 Wilton Way, E8 1BJ
  • CLR James Library (can assist with bidding) Dalston Square, 1-7 Beechwood  Road E8 3BX
  • Hackney Central Library (can assist with bidding) 1st Floor, 1 Reading Lane, E8 3GQ
  • Homerton Library (can assist with bidding) Homerton High Street, E9 6AS
  • Homerton Neighbourhood Office (can assist with bidding) 92 Well Street, E9 7JA
  • Queensbridge and De Beauvoir Neighbourhood Office (can assist with bidding) 31 De Beauvoir Road, N1 5SJ
  • Shoreditch Library (can assist with bidding) 80 Hoxton Street, N1 6LP
  • Shoreditch Neighbourhood Office (can assist with bidding) Bletchley Court, 1 Cropley Street, N1 5SJ
  • Stoke Newington Library (can assist with bidding) Stoke Newington Church Street, N16 0JS
  • Stamford Hill Library (can assist with bidding) Portland Avenue, N16 6BS
  • Stoke Newington Neighbourhood Office (can assist with bidding) Stoke Newington Church Street, N16 OJR.
  • Stamford Hill Neighbourhood Office (can assist with bidding) Clock House, 149 Stamford Hill, N16 5LG
  • Citizens Advice Bureau (can assist with bidding) 236 - 238 Mare Street, E8 1HE
  • Age Concern Hackney (can assist with bidding) 22 Dalston Lane, E8 3AZ
  • Bangla Housing Association 100 Morning Lane, London E9 6LH
  • St Leonard’s Learning Disability Services St Leonard’s Hospital, 3rd Floor, Block D, Nuttall Street, N1 5LZ
  • An Viet Foundation An Viet House, 12-14 Englefield Road, N1 4LS
  • Robin Redmond Resource Centre 440 Seven Sisters Road, N4 2RD
  • North London Muslim Community Centre (can assist with bidding) 66-68 Cazenove Road, N16 6AA
  • Halkevi Community Centre (can assist with bidding) 92-100 Stoke Newington Road, N16 7XB
  • Agudas Israel Housing Association (can assist with bidding), 206 Lordship Road, London N16 5ES




This map of the borough shows you the lettings areas we use to indicate where the available properties are

Map of Hackney

mother and child image

How the system works

Under Hackney Choice applicants are still assessed according to housing need and placed into bands.

  1. Emergency
  2. Urgent
  3. Priority/Homeless
  4. General
  5. Reserve

Hackney Council has a waiting list of over 12,000 people, and like many other London boroughs, does not have the supply of properties to match the huge demand. Successful bidders will be those with the greatest need and likely to be in the top three bands.

All icon


 This symbol means everyone in the five bands can bid for the property shown, unless there restrictions in the advert.

However, if you are in the bottom two bands – General or Reserve – there is no guarantee you will be successful.


Most applicants are now expected to bid for advertised vacancies. Bids made for each property are ranked by bands and date order.


Older applicants, who have low level or no support needs, may bid for sheltered accommodation.


Image of people waiting

What happens when bidding is over

When bidding closes all bids are sorted into priority order with those in the highest band and with the oldest band date being placed at the top of the list. Eligibility checks are then carried out by the lettings team, including checks for rent arrears, local connection and immigration status.


After the checks have been completed, a list of the top five eligible bidders will be sent to the Council neighbourhood offices or Housing Associations.  ‘Shortlisted’ applicants will usually be contacted within a week by phone or letter and invited to view the property, for this reason it is important to let us know if your phone number changes.

Cross Borough properties

To give you more housing options, Hackney Council is part of a voluntary scheme that helps you move across boroughs in east London.


All participating east London boroughs have agreed a protocol that only allows the two top eligible bidders to be put forward for properties advertised through the Cross Borough scheme.

Image of Victoria Park

What does this mean for you?

If you are bidding for a Cross Borough property and you are ranked as the number 1 or number 2 bidder, and you are eligible for that property, then you will be put forward. However, if you are the number 3 or number 4 bidder then you will not be put forward. Please note that your ranking may change to the number 1 or 2 place when top bidders are checked for eligibility.


All Cross Borough properties clearly show the logo of the borough they belong to.

Rehousing Options – swapping homes

Our choice-based lettings scheme does not increase the number of homes we can offer to our tenants and other applicants. We have many more people registered for housing than we can help each year. So please consider all the other available housing options including looking for a mutual exchange. There are three schemes we recommend:

  1. The mutual exchange scheme included in this website. Once you are logged in click on My Mutual Exchange to register your details and find out more.
  2. Homeswapper (this will open a new window). This is the biggest national scheme and is free to join for Hackney tenants.
  3. House Exchange (this will open a new window). There is a small fee to join this scheme.

Click here for further general information about mutual exchanges and please be aware that we offer detailed advice on all rehousing options.


If you have any queries regarding the above, call us on 020 8356 2135 or email

Contact us 

If you require assistance with bidding or are unable to place a bid for a property  please call the Contact Centre on 0208 356 2135 who can place a bid on your behalf or support you in placing a bid.

You can also place a bid via our automated phone line 08456 504 125 or via text on 07781 486 526 or find more information here Website (this will open a new page)


Marcia Facey, Operations Manager