Anyone had a Coin street housing interview?

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Saturday 8 February 2014 2.51pm
Just wondering if anyone's had a interview for one of coin streets properties before and knows what this means.

I received a letter this morning telling me that I have to go for a interview regarding the property, letter also states property details and a sample tenancy agreement.

I would like to know if it's just me or a few others going for an interview and then the decisions made after all interviews have taken place or do you find out on the day if you've been successful?

Any help appreciated as I haven't got a clue how it works and I really don't want to get my hopes up for nothing!

Thanks
Zoe
Sunday 9 February 2014 8.31am
Hi Kellou32,

Did you bid for the property from Southwark? If so I suspect it works the same as TMO letting and I know people who have done that. The top three bidders are invited in, the property should go to bidder number one, but I believe there is some margin of choice for the organisation, so the key is to show how you could strengthen them as a group.

Coin Street is likely to be similar to TMO's as they have a management board and are likely to be looking for the same things, namely people who will get involved in the community, come to meetings and even better, get actively involved in the running of the co-op.

I think it's worth emphasising any experience you have of voluntary work, being involved in voluntary groups and what you bring to them as a group that means they should choose you above another tenant, so any skills that you think might be relevant. These could be skills you have from work, for example you might have to take minutes at part of your job, which is a very transferable skill. If you run your local charity shop, do plumbing repairs for elderly people in your spare time and can offer free French classes for residents, make sure you tell them!

If you have never done anything like that, you should perhaps emphasise why you want to live in Coin Street, so local ties etc. if you bid for the property because you are keen to live in an estate that is self managed by the residents you should tell them this. If you bid for it because of it's location and you aren't interested in getting involved in resident management you maybe should reconsider whether it's the right place for you, as I suspect they will expect those living there to get involved in some shape or form. However, getting involved in your community is great, so hopefully you'll welcome the opportunity.

On a practical note, I suspect they won't tell you on the day if you have been successful, the interview should just be you, but the viewing might be several prospective tenants and be prepared for there to be several people interviewing. It's also probably worth dressing smartly, on the basis that people can be shallow and make decisions based on how you dress. I suspect anything that suggests you are a noisy neighbour or won't pay your rent will go against you and they might even ask questions about this sort of thing, so be prepared (if you had rent arrears because of housing benefit delay, try to show you are the proactive sort who will try to resolve it, not someone who leaves it to their housing officer to resolve. If you aren't the proactive sort, again you might need to reconsider, as small organisations are really negatively affected by rent arrears and one persons arrears are another persons repairs not being fixed, as they don't have the money).

Good luck!
Sunday 9 February 2014 10.16am
Hi Zoe,

Thank you so much for your reply, you're help is very much appreciated.

I didn't actually bid for this property through the council but I maybe could have been nominated by them as I am very overcrowded.
Or it just could be that I have been on the waiting list for 13 years.

I would love to be a part of a community where as we get to say what goes on with the management of our properties and I will do my best to convince them that I am willing to take part in anything they think I am able to really.

I have also got quite a few connections to SE1 and hopefully this will also go in my favour.

Thanks again for your help
Sunday 16 February 2014 11.12am
Hi Kellou32
Was very encouraged by your message about coin street housing interview.
We have been on the council waiting list for the last four years and are also very overcrowded. As it seems we may also be languishing for maybe many years more, I was wondering how you got onto their waiting list. I was also love to live within an co-op.
How did your interview go? What kind of questions do they ask and do you find out there and then if you get the property.

Thanks
Sunday 16 February 2014 7.17pm
Walworthmum, I think they get their prospective tenants from the council housing list. I don't think they do "direct nominations" or allocations, but I may be wrong on that. Also - and I could be wrong - but I think they take their tenants from the Lambeth housing list as it falls within the London Borough of Lambeth.

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