Being a WDH tenant gives you far more than a roof over your head. Alongside a range of different homes to rent, we offer a variety of services to support our customers, from money advice to help with health and wellbeing. 

If you’re looking to rent with us, please register with Homesearch – our choice-based lettings service. We aim to register new applications within five to six weeks, however this may be longer during busy times. We will write to you once your application has been registered.

Homesearch makes it easy for you to see what homes are available to rent. It’s designed to give you more choice in where you want to live. 
Once you have found a home you like, you can express an interest on the internet, by phone call or text, or in person. 

Properties are advertised on Wednesdays at 10.05 am. The adverts are also displayed at our Wakefield and Pontefract Hubs.  This is the start of the advertising cycle.

Members can submit their expressions of interest from then, up until 9.55 am the following Wednesday, which is when the advertising cycle closes.

For more information on how to search for a property to rent, please visit our dedicated Homesearch website for all the information you need about finding a new home, including the bidding process and time scales.

To speak to a member of the Homesearch team, please call 0344 9 020 202. 

Visit the Homesearch website

Find out more

Homes to rent FAQs

How is my Homesearch banding decided?

Our simple banding system reflects the housing needs of the members in each band.

Once you become a Homesearch member you are placed in a band – A, B, C or D – which, along with the Local Lettings Strategy, tells you which properties you can apply for.

Within each band, members will be placed in date order of membership.

If your circumstances change and you move into a priority band, your new band start date will change to become the date the priority was awarded.

Band A includes:

  • Statutory Homeless
  • Key Worker Status
  • Urgent Social Need
  • Under Occupation
  • Welfare and Medical Needs
  • HM Forces Personnel

Band B includes:

  • Medical Priority
  • Redevelopment and Regeneration
  • Homeless Prevention
  • Families in lodgings / Rough Sleepers
  • Overcrowding / Unfit properties
  • Service Tenants and Armed Forces
  • Under Occupation
  • Social Need

Band C includes:

  • Under Occupation
  • All members who do not meet any of the criteria set out in Bands A, B and D

Band D includes all other applicants who do not meet any of the criteria in bands A and B.

  • No local connection
  • Social housing tenants with no housing need

For more details on whether you meet the criteria of Bands A, B, C or D, please read our Homesearch Membership Information Guide, which includes all you need to know about how our properties are let.

How long will I be waiting for a property?

Waiting times for our properties vary depending on the type of home you are bidding for and its location.

Once a tenancy has been accepted, the results will be published on our Homesearch website along with the waiting times. This will give you an idea of how popular an area is and how long you may have to wait.

This information will help you decide how to use your expressions of interest in future advertising cycles.

What is the bedroom tax and am I affected?

If you are a working age WDH tenant, the amount of financial support you may receive towards your housing costs will be reduced if you have more bedrooms than your family needs.

This is called the Removal of the Spare Room Subsidy, which is also known as the ‘Bedroom Tax’. 

Will I be affected?

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) decides if you are under occupying your property and therefore affected by the bedroom tax.

If you are over state pension age you will not be affected by the bedroom tax.

The DWP’s rules say you are entitled to one bedroom for:

  • each couple;
  • each adult (16 years and over);
  • two children of the same sex under 16 years; and,
  • two children of different sex under 10 years.

The following table gives some examples of bedroom tax composition.

Household composition Bedrooms
Couple with one child 2
Single parent with a girl age 6 and a boy age 8 2
Couple with a girl age 6 and a boy age 12 3
Single parent with a boy age 17 and a boy age 12 3
Couple with girls age 17 and 14 and a boy age 9 4

It is important that you update the details on your Housing Benefit or Universal Credit claim so that your circumstances are correct when you are assessed.

How much financial support will I lose?

Depending on your individual circumstances you could lose some or all of your Housing Benefit / Housing Element as a result of the Bedroom Tax.

  • If you are under occupying by one bedroom your Housing Benefit / Element will be reduced by 14% of your rent amount.
  • If you are under occupying by two or more bedrooms your Housing Benefit / Element will be reduced by 25% of your rent amount.

It is your responsibility to make up this shortfall and pay your rent in full.

If you need further information visit the GOV.UK website or the Housing Benefit pages on your local authority website.

Your housing options

If you are affected by the Bedroom Tax, you will not necessarily have to move, but, you may want to move to a smaller property.

Either way, you have options.

Option 1: Stay in your current home and make up the shortfall in your rent

  • You could cover the shortfall from your other personal income.  We can help you with budgeting and debt advice.
  • You could try to find work or increase your hours.  Our Community Employment Advisors can help. 
  • You could take in a lodger or another family member. You need to think very carefully about sharing your home with someone else and you must obtain our permission before you do this.  The lodger’s income may affect your Housing Benefit claim and you may have to collect rent from them.

 Option 2: Move to a smaller home

  • You can apply for a mutual exchange. For more information read our factsheet WDH Mutual Exchange. To register and look for exchanges, visit the House Exchange website.
  • You can apply for a move through Homesearch. Once registered you can express interest in WDH properties that are advertised each week.

Further support

You may be able to claim Discretionary Housing Payment to cover the shortfall if you receive Housing Benefit or Universal Credit (Housing Element). Discretionary Housing Payment can help if you are affected by:

  • the benefit cap; 
  • the bedroom tax; or
  • have a shortfall in rent

For information and to apply visit GOV.UK Discretionary Housing web pages for further information.

Your personal circumstances

We understand that not everyone is the same and you may want to check your personal circumstances against the rules for bedroom tax.

If you feel that your personal circumstances should exempt you from the bedroom tax, you should contact the Housing Benefit Service of your local authority (or the DWP directly if you are claiming Universal Credit) to discuss this further.

Your local authority or the DWP will decide whether your housing related benefit is reduced as a result of the bedroom tax and by how much.

What is an Energy Performance Certificate?

It is a legal requirement that all domestic and most commercial buildings in the UK, which are available to buy or rent, must have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).

For more information visit EPC Register.


How do I register for an account?

To register for your account you must enter the following details into the registration form:

  • Tenancy reference number * - which can be found on your Rent Card.
  • First name(s)
  • Surname *
  • Date of birth *
  • Postcode *
  • Email address

All details marked * must be completed and must match exactly with the details we hold for you, or registration will not be successful.

You must have an email address to sign up for an account, but it does not need to match any previous email address that we hold for you.

Once the details have been entered correctly, you will be asked to create a user name and password.

Watch our short film about 'How to register' for help.

We will use the email address you provide to send confirmation of your successful registration and a link to activate your account so you can login straightaway.

If the details you enter do not match our records, check the details carefully and try again.  If still cannot log in, please phone OneCALL on 0345 8 507 507 (lines are open all day, every day)

How do I register for a mutual exchange?

Does your current property no longer suit your needs? Are you looking to move to a different area? If so, a mutual exchange with another WDH tenant or a tenant from a different housing association or council might be the answer you are looking for.

You can register your information and find information about other tenants wanting to exchange on the House Exchange website.

For more information on mutual exchanges please read our factsheet WDH Mutual Exchange, visit the Transfer and Mutual Exchange page on the Homesearch website or phone OneCALL on 0345 8 507 507.

How do I end someone else's tenancy?

When someone dies, it is a very emotional time and can be very difficult to come to terms with.

Unfortunately, there are always formalities to carry out. The following information will hopefully give you some practical help and support in making the arrangements you need to end their tenancy.

If the family member or friend was our tenant, please contact us.  We will ask you if there is a Personal Representative as part of his or her estate. A Personal Representative is either the executors of the late tenants will, or administrators appointed by the courts when a tenant dies intestate (without having made a will). 

In most cases, we will accept a ‘third-party notice’ from the next of kin, however there may be instances when we will only accept the third part notice from a designated Personal Representative to end the tenancy. Where this is the case, we will advise you of this as soon as possible.  The tenancy will continue until the four weeks’ notice period ends.

 We will need to know:

  • details of the tenant's next of kin or Personal Representative;
  • your address or the address of the Personal Representative who is dealing with the tenant's affairs (if not you); and
  • you will need to tell us which Monday you expect to hand the keys in by. This is the date you will have cleared the property of all furniture and belongings and can return the keys to a Service Access Point or Hub. 
  • We will also need to see a copy of the death certificate.
Can I buy my home?

If you were a secure tenant with Wakefield Council and you became an assured protected tenant when the ownership of your home transferred to WDH you may have the Preserved Right to Buy (PRTB).

If you became a tenant after transfer, and have been a tenant with WDH or another social landlord for over three years in total, you may qualify for the Right to Acquire (RTA) scheme.

Discounts to buy your home

Under the Preserved Right to Buy scheme the maximum discount to buy your home is 70% (40 years) for a house and 70% (15 years) for a flat / apartment or maisonette. Please be aware that the amount of discount is capped at £96,010.

Under the Right to Acquire scheme, there is a set discount for all applications which is £9,000 in the Yorkshire area.  


The main difference between the Preserved Right to Buy (PRTB) and Right to Acquire (RTA) schemes is the amount of discount.  The PRTB scheme has a much higher discount entitlement.


It takes around five months to buy your home through the Preserved Right to Buy (PRTB) or Right to Acquire (RTA) scheme, provided we have all the necessary information.  The time scales can vary depending on how quickly information is provided.

Certain properties are excluded from the PRTB scheme.

If you are a WDH tenant you can email the Right to Buy team or phone 01977 788830 for further information, or visit GOV.UK buying your council home web pages.

Can I buy or rent land from WDH?

You can buy or rent land for a specific purpose such as a garden or driveway.

Who do I contact?
Our Commercial Team on 01977 788605 or write to:

Commercial Team
Merefield House
Whistler Drive
WF10 5HX

You will need to tell us the specific location of the land that you are interested in and how you intend to use it, for example: a bigger garden.  This will help us to make an initial assessment.

If it is decided in principle that an application can proceed, we will send you an application form to complete and return along with an administration fee of £200.  This fee is non-returnable whether or not your application is successful and covers our costs in processing your application. Payment can be made by cheque made payable to Wakefield and District Housing Ltd, or phone OneCALL 0345 8 507 507 for other options.

Is there a cost?
Yes, apart from the non-returnable administration fee detailed above, you will be required to pay the sale price of the land or annual rental cost as the case may be, along with our surveyors and legal fees which are as follows:-

Land Sales
Surveyors fees -1.5% of the value of the land subject to a minimum of £300.  This is to pay for the valuation and other work associated with the purchase.

Plan fee - £125 for the preparation and provision of the sale plan

Legal fees - are 10% of the value of the land subject to a minimum of £300 to pay for costs incurred in drawing up the legal documentation

Licence (renting)
Surveyors fees - £125.  This is to pay for the work associated with the letting.

Plan fee - £125 for the preparation and provision of the sale plan

Legal fees - £100 to pay for costs incurred in drawing up the legal documentation

Are there any areas of land I cannot buy or rent?
Yes there are areas of land that we might not want to sell, for example, an area with trees, as we want to keep the environment pleasant for the people who live there.

If you have had an application to buy land turned down then we may consider renting it to you instead and then issue you with a licence.

However, there are also some areas we will not want to sell or rent.

Licence terms and conditions
A licence does not give you a legal interest in the land, but gives you the right to occupy it, generally on a short-term or annual basis, paying rent yearly. The rental rate is calculated depending on the type of use and the size of the land and the agreement can be terminated by either you or WDH.

The process for renting land is the same as that for buying land. The administration fee and plan preparation fee are payable as above, however surveyors’ and legal fees are at a lower rate of £125 and £100 respectively.

Can I keep pets in my home?

You can normally keep a domestic pet such as a cat or a dog. We expect you to look after them responsibly so they do not cause a nuisance to your neighbours.

Under the terms of our Tenancy Agreement you are not allowed to keep dogs or cats if your home has a shared / communal entrance. 

We reserve the right to ask you to remove any animal we consider is unsuitable to be kept at your home.

Further information on the type of pet you can and cannot keep is available in your tenant account online area.

If you have a Certificate of Exemption for your XL Bully, then we may give permission for you to keep the dog at your home, depending on the circumstances and your home type.  

If you do not have a Certificate of Exemption for your XL Bully, we cannot grant permission for you to keep the dog at your home. We would need to report this to the Police as it is now a criminal offence to own an XL Bully without an exemption certificate. We may also look to instigate tenancy enforcement action alongside any criminal proceedings

Can I run a business from my home?

You will need to find out if you are eligible under your tenancy agreement and obtain written permission from WDH before you start running a business from your home. We will not unreasonably refuse permission for you to run a business from your home.

What is my right to buy or right to acquire my home?

Please read our factsheet for more information.