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Housing strategy, policies, and information

Information about the policies that guide how we deliver housing in the borough

Affordable Housing Policies

We have policies that we follow to help us decide how affordable housing is provided in the area.

Affordable housing and planning

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) has guidance relating to when S106 planning obligations for affordable housing should not be required.

For details on the changes in National Planning Policy, and to view our implications for policy CS09 of the adopted Core Strategy 2011, please visit our affordable housing (planning) page.

Housing needs research and assessments

To ensure we develop policies and plans that meet the needs of current and future residents we have carried out research. 

In 2006 we carried out a Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA). This research showed us that:

  • there was a net need of 797 new affordable homes per year
  • the main annual shortfall in social rented housing is for 2 bedroom houses
  • the area experiences high levels of in-migration (where people move to our area from others in the country), mainly households without children, moving here to retire.

For further information please read our SHMA policy document.

Rural Affordable Housing

We have over the last 15 years worked with housing association partners to develop new affordable homes in villages across the Borough. Many of the schemes were given planning permission based on a long term agreement that when such homes are allocated, preference is given to people who already live in the village or have a connection to the village.

In most cases, such housing has been developed where there are strong demand pressures for existing housing. And often where buying on the open market or private renting is beyond the reach of many people. As well as meeting identified housing need, such schemes have been developed to help sustain communities by enabling, particularly younger people, or low income households, to remain in the communities they are established in.

New affordable housing being developed in villages will often involve a mix of tenures. So as well as homes for low cost rent, there could be low cost homes for sale including shared ownership and shared equity.

For details of existing rural affordable schemes please see the document downloads at the bottom of this page.

Homelessness Strategy 2015-19

Our homelessness strategy was prepared following consultation with partners and public. There is an Action Plan which supports the Homelessness Strategy. This is reviewed annually every June.

Tenancy Strategy

Our Tenancy Strategy sets out our aims for social housing tenancies in the area such as the type and length of a tenancy.

Each housing association has it's own Tenancy Policy explaining what type of tenancies they will provide. These take into account our views as set out in the overall Tenancy Strategy.

Home Energy Report 2017

We provides a report to Government every two years setting out home energy issues in the area.  And we state what we plan to with the information, and how we can improve home energy efficiency.

Long Term Empty Homes Strategy

Our Empty Home Strategy explains more about the Council's approach to long term empty homes.

Housing Assistance Policy (HAP)

The HAP sets out our approach in helping vulnerable people adapt or improve their homes, especially Disabled Facilities Grants.

Social Housing Allocations Policy

This is our policy for determining the priorities and procedures to be followed in allocating social housing in the area.  

It explains the rules we will follow in maintaining a housing register, and how we allocate social housing to applicants on the register.

Lettings plans

The West Norfolk Homechoice Panel can agree Lettings Plans for certain schemes where a need has been identified by a Housing Association landlord to resolve specific housing management issues. Lettings Plans are for a limited time period and are subject to review.

Gypsy and traveller accommodation assessment (GTANA)

The GTANA is used to help with the preparation of development plan policies for the provision of new gypsy and traveller pitches and travelling showpeople plots in the borough. This ensures that local authorities comply with planning policy and legislation. For further information please visit our GTANA page.

Local Housing Profile

Our Local Housing Profile shows data from the housing register and other sources for every parish in the borough.

Custom and self-build action plan

Custom build homes are where people build their own homes, or use a developer to build a home for them. We've created an action plan to help support custom and self-build housing.