My Trivallis

Ben explains the housing shortage

9 April 2024

Ben shares the challenges that have come with the increase in urgent housing need while sharing advice on how to successfully bid on a home.

Ben Griffiths, Lettings and Decant Coordinator and his team used to have a tough job filling empty houses.

People were reluctant to move around, preferred a bigger place or just didn’t like the area.

Five years on, one pandemic and a cost-of-living crisis later and the social housing landscape has completely changed.

Ben shares the challenges that have come with the increase in urgent housing need while sharing advice on how to successfully bid on a home.

“Since the COVID pandemic, the world has changed significantly and the world of housing is no different.

“Currently, there are approximately 6000 people on the Common Housing Register who are looking for a property. This register is managed by RCT Council and you can access it using the Homefinder website.

“The Council will allocate homes based on a system that prioritises those with the most urgent housing need. The Council will work with all housing associations in the area to try and identify the housing that best meets a person or family’s need.

“There are many reasons why people would register with Homefinder: they may be homeless or at risk of homelessness, they may be staying in temporary accommodation, need a larger or smaller home, their current home doesn’t meet their needs or they simply want to move home.

“The high number of people on the Common Housing Register means that demand for social housing is greater than it has ever been, which is why some people are left waiting a long time to move.

“A clear example of this would be that before COVID we would be unable to allocate properties in certain areas, as no one would bid for them.

“We would then have to advertise these properties on Gumtree to find tenants. Fast forward to today and these same properties will regularly receive over 50 bids and some of our homes can even receive as many as 200 bids. The cost-of-living crisis has only made this demand worse.

“People from all walks of life are in need of social housing and the number of homes we and other housing associations have available cannot meet that increased demand.

“This is why you will see so many social housing developments popping up across the region. It is also why we are trying to bring old properties back into use to try and house more people.

“Just before Christmas we handed over the last set of keys to ten properties that were brought back into use using Welsh Government funding. This enabled us to move several families out of temporary accommodation and into somewhere they can truly call home.

“I know that this information won’t make your wait for a new home any easier, but I hope it helps explain why properties are allocated the way they are and why social housing development is desperately needed across the region.”

So, what can you do to give yourself the best chance of being successful on bidding on a property?

  • Make sure all the information on your Homefinder application is correct and up to date to prevent any delays.
  • Provide Homefinder with as much supporting information as possible so you can be banded correctly, based on your housing need.
  • Check Homefinder every week as new properties are advertised every week from Thursday – Tuesday.
  • Read the advert for any property you want to bid for thoroughly, this makes sure it meets your needs and is appropriate for you.

If you are looking for a new home and want to apply to the Common Housing Register please visit to complete an application.

Remember the above tips when filling in your application and good luck in finding a new home!