Housing Advice Officer

Company
Basildon Council
Date Posted
14th June 2018
Reference
RQ309336
Sector
Public Services and Administration
Location
Basildon
Benefits
Inside IR35
Salary
£12 to £20 Per Hour

Main Purpose: 

The Housing Solutions Team is part of the Housing Choice Department (the strategic housing service) and sits within the Housing Solutions Service. Its primary function is to prevent homelessness by helping customers retain their current accommodation and, where this cannot be achieved, provide access to a range of suitable alternative housing options fulfilling the Council’s statutory obligations as set out in the Housing Act 1996 (as amended) and the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017. 
You will be responsible for assessing customers’ housing needs and wishes in line with the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017, producing and agreeing a personalised housing plan which you will keep under regular review until a long-term, sustainable housing solution is secured. 


You will work holistically with customers on both their short term housing needs as well as their longer term aspirations. You will manage a caseload, drawing in support and assistance from other statutory and voluntary organisations as appropriate to help customers achieve their housing goals and increase their life opportunities moving forward. 

Main Duties:

1. Regularly undertake comprehensive housing needs’ assessments of customers’ who are at significant risk of homelessness and may face multiple disadvantage as a result. 

2. In line with the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 produce and agree personalised housing plans for customers which outline personal sensitive information, prioritising pro-active steps to prevent homelessness in the first instance. 

3. Provide specialist advice across a whole range of complex issues such as housing, welfare benefits, financial well-being and employment, referring customers to specialist agencies and departments for additional assistance where appropriate. 

4. Manage a caseload of customers, working with each to offer an individual and empowering service to customers in housing need, encouraging customers to choose from a range of viable options and keeping each personalised housing plan under regular review. 

5. Negotiate with hosts, landlords and lenders, taking any other action as appropriate in order to prevent or relieve homelessness until an alternative long-term, sustainable housing solution can be secured. 

6. Represent applicants in court, at case conferences and appeal hearings and in their dealings with other agencies as required in the pursuit of the prevention or relief of homelessness. 

7. Deliver innovative, tailored solutions to meet housing need using a variety of means including close liaison with the Private Rented Sector Team to secure good quality, affordable private rented accommodation through one of the Council’s private sector access schemes. 

8. Work across the Housing Solutions Service and, in particular, with colleagues in the Temporary Accommodation and Private Rented Sector Teams to ensure the timely provision of interim accommodation and expediency of affordable private rented sector accommodation as a long-term prevention or relief of homelessness. 

9. Conduct interviews with applicants under Part VII of the 1996 Housing Act as amended to undertake comprehensive investigations of both housing advice and homeless approaches in accordance with statutory legislation, guidance and good practice and compile long detailed S184 decisions which require lengthy periods of concentration 
 

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