Join The Housing Register

The Housing Register is our waiting list for people to get council or housing association properties. You can join the Housing Register on Dorset Home Choice

To join the Housing Register

Apply on the Dorset Home Choice website.

Read more about how to use Dorset Home Choice, if you are having problems with the website or aren't sure how it works. 

How long does it take?

You won't get onto the list straight away, it takes a while for your application to be processed. Once you are on the list you will have to wait for a property because demand for social housing is very high.

Waits are very long for all homes for people with general needs. Please look elsewhere if you need to move more quickly. 

Average waiting times
  GoldSilver  Bronze
Sheltered  12 months 20 months 8 months
Studio general needs  19 months 4 years No data
 1 bed general needs  21 months 4 years No data
 2 bed flat  19 months 4 years No data
2 bed house  4 years 5 years No data
3 bed house  6 years No data No data
 4 bed house  7 years No data No data
 5 bed house  8 years No data No data

‘No Data’ means that no lets have been made for that property type in that band

Who can join the Housing Register?

To qualify for the Housing Register, you need at least one of the following: 

  • To have lived in Bournemouth for at least three years when you make your application (this doesn’t apply to members of the Armed and Reserve Forces)
  • To be employed or have a firm offer of employment in Bournemouth, and a permanent contract for 16 hours or more per week
  • To have close family (parents, grandparents, adult children) that have lived in Bournemouth for at least five years.

Not everybody can join the Housing Register 

We won't accept your application if:

  • you are a homeowner whose home is not suitable for your needs but you can get alternative accommodation without help
  • you are a household with income six times higher the Local Housing Allowance level.

What happens if you're added to the Housing Register

If you are put on the register list, you will be placed in one of three bands, depending on your housing needs. 

You’ll then be able to use the Dorset Home Choice website to view and bid on the properties that are advertised weekly.

You can only bid for properties that cover your housing needs, and you must be registered with the right local authority.

The other local authorities who are also on this scheme are:

  • Poole
  • Christchurch & East Dorset
  • North Dorset
  • West Dorset
  • Purbeck
  • Weymouth & Portland

Ask for a review if you want to appeal our decision

If we don’t accept you on the Housing Register and you disagree with our decision, you can ask for a review.

Our decision is based on:

  • Your eligibility to be on the Housing Register
  • The way your application was processed
  • The band you were placed in
  • Your removal from the Housing Register

If you want a review, ask for a request form. Send this to the Housing Options Team within twenty one days of hearing our decision not to include you on the register. 

They will acknowledge your appeal within seven days.

A senior staff member who hasn’t been involved with your application will complete the review. Your review should be completed within fifty-six days. If we need more information, this may take longer.

If you’re unsure about asking for a review, contact the Housing Options Team first for advice.

Read our Allocations Policy for more information.