Restrictions on council lettings

Some council and housing association properties have restrictions on who can apply for them, and people on the housing register will be graded into bands depending on their needs. There are also rules regarding the number of bedrooms allocated to people with children.

Download the housing allocation scheme for full details

Housing bands

Some adverts will show restrictions about who can apply for that property. If there are no restrictions, then anybody can apply.

When you are put on the housing waiting list, you will be put into one of four bands.

Band A

Band A includes:

  • people living in unsatisfactory housing, from which they have to move because the property is to be demolished or refurbished
  • tenants who are under-occupying family homes or living in properties with adaptations they do not need.
  • tenants in hospital who cannot return to their property because it is no longer suitable for their needs


Applicants are housed in date order from when they were given Band A priority.

Bands B1 and B2

Bands B1 and B2 are for people who have an urgent need to move. This includes people who:

  • have serious medical problems affected by their housing
  • are homeless and in 'priority need'
  • are living in a severely overcrowded home or living in insanitary housing as assessed and determined by Environmental Health and where remedial works cannot be completed within a reasonable period of time
  • are at risk of domestic violence, hate crime or other abuse
  • need housing to move out of local authority care, supported housing, or other particular types of accommodation
  • form households placed into either leased or private rented sector accommodation, by Royal Greenwich, in order to prevent homelessness, and who are subsequently faced with homelessness through no fault of their own
  • are key workers or others with a particular need to live in the borough, or council staff who must move to do their job, or because they are leaving their job (staff who have been dismissed will not be eligible)
  • tenants affected by the 'Under Occupancy Cap' who are under-occupying their property by one bedroom, or people left in council properties after the tenancy ends, subject to an assessment of their needs and circumstances.
  • armed services personnel and their families who are in housing, following their discharge from the Forces, and who have a connection with the borough (B1) or who do not have a connection with the borough (B2).

Applicants are housed in date order from when they were given Band B1 or B2 priority (Band B1 applicants will be shortlisted before Band B2 - see the Allocations Policy for further details on the B bandings)

Band C

Band C is for all applicants on the housing register. Applicants in Band C do not have any priority and are housed in date order from the date their applications were registered.

All applicants will be placed in Band C on registration. They may also be placed within one of the other bands depending on the outcome of any assessment.

No band restriction

If the advert says there are no band restrictions, it means people in any band can apply.

Other restrictions

There are also other restrictions, such as the following.

  • Age - Some properties are for those aged over 50 or over 60 only.
  • Existing tenants - Some properties are advertised for existing Royal Borough of Greenwich council tenants only.
  • Number of people - Some adverts state the minimum or maximum number of people allowed in the property.
  • Children - There may need to be a certain number of children in the household.

General rules for restriction on children

The following general rules apply:

  • houses will be allocated to households with children
  • a child means at least one person aged 15 years or less.

Property size policy

The following rules are used to allocate properties to applicants in Bands A, B1, B2 and C to make sure the Royal Borough of Greenwich makes best use of housing stock. Non-working age households, are exempt from the size criteria - this is to encourage people to downsize or exchange their properties.

The rules allow one bedroom for:

  • every adult couple (married or unmarried)
  • any other adult aged 16 years or over
  • any two children of the same sex aged under 16
  • any two children aged under ten years
  • any other child (other than a child whose main home is elsewhere)
  • children who can't share because of a disability or medical condition
  • a carer (or team of carers) providing overnight care.

A parlour room counts as a bedroom for allocation purposes.

Rules for property types that will be offered

Applicants assessed and awarded a priority rehousing band will be able to bid for all types of properties (This change is effective from 15 February 2022 and is not retrospective), except where there is a medical recommendation excluding them from doing so.

There are separate allocations policies for applicants with priority from regeneration areas. There is also a separate allocations policy for the allocation of caravan pitches on the Council’s website.