Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) has affordable homes to rent across Stafford Borough and surrounding areas.
Unlike private landlords, SARH do not ask for a deposit and you do not have to pay any agency fees. Your tenancy requires you to pay your rent in advance. If you will be paying your rent monthly you will need to pay four weeks in advance.
To apply for a home with SARH, you will first need to complete an online Housing Registration Form on the SARHomes website. The information within this form will be used by SARH to help you find a home that is suited to your personal circumstances.
Most of our homes are advertised on the SARHomes website, where you can view and apply for SARH homes that suit your needs and personal circumstances.
SARH Lettings Policy
Apply for a home
To apply for a SARH home you will first need to complete an online Housing Registration Form on the SARHomes website.
To complete the form you will need to provide:
• National Insurance number for yourself and any other household member over the age of 18.
• Addresses for you and your partner for the last 5 years, including the dates you moved in and out.
• Dates of birth for all household members.
• The value of your property and the amount of equity you have in your home (if you or any other members of your household are owner occupier).
• Income and savings amounts for you and your partner.
If you are offered a SARH home you may be asked to provide a reference from an existing or former landlord, as well as other information to support your application.
How are SARH homes advertised?
All available SARH homes are advertised online on the SARHomes website.
New homes are advertised from 9am every Thursday until 11:59pm the following Tuesday. During this time customers are able to apply for any homes which they would like to rent.
All applications for SARH homes are considered every Wednesday and customers will be contacted directly to view the property if their application is successful.
Feedback on homes which have been allocated is included on the SARHomes website to give an indication of likely waiting times, although no personal information is disclosed.
The right home for your needs
SARH has committed to offer up to 75% of its homes to Stafford Borough Council (SBC) who will nominate a customer in line with their needs-based Housing Allocations Scheme. If a home is not let following a nomination from SBC it will be let using SARHomes.
SARHomes includes limited circumstances in which existing SARH customers will be given a priority to transfer to a different SARH home to comply with our charitable aims and the HCA’s tenancy standards.
Information shared by existing SARH customers when they register will be used to determine whether they have any of the following needs:
• Customers who need to move because they are living in under-occupied or overcrowded conditions
• Customers who have medical needs which are preventing them from returning home from hospital or from being able to use essential facilities within their home
• Customers who are experiencing or are at risk of domestic abuse, harassment or serious harm
In the event that a SARH home is not offered to an SBC nomination or an existing SARH customer with an identified need, the home will be offered to the customer who has the earliest registration date with SARHomes.
Where two customers apply for a home with the same priority, the home will be allocated to the customer with the earliest registration date.
Preparing to take on a home
From signing your tenancy agreement to helping you arrange low cost home contents insurance and finding out about local amenities, SARH will help you every step of the way.
Read our short guide for new SARH Customers.
Changes to the way SARH lets its home
We have a new ‘Lettings Policy’.
The main changes affect customers who are:
- Already a SARH customer and applying for a transfer
- Applicants who do not live in Stafford Borough
You can find the new policy here
Changes are also being made to our letting procedures.
If a customer has been offered three homes and has refused them, the housing application will be cancelled. It will not be possible to make a new application for 12 months.
SARH strongly recommends that customers carefully consider the details of the homes they are applying for. This will give the best chance of a home being accepted, once offered. The SARH property advertisement gives details of the property type, location, floor number, any special features and restrictions.
Applicants can ask for the decision to cancel an application to be reviewed. If it can be proven that there is a valid reason to refuse a home, the application will be re-activated. However, refusals prior to 1 December 2019 will not be considered.
What types of homes do SARH offer?
SARH provide a range of affordable homes for rent and shared ownership including houses, apartments and bungalows. A number of these homes are specially designed for older and vulnerable customers to enable them to live independently for longer.
The majority of SARH homes will be let through the SARHomes website, and some homes may have specific criteria attached to them to ensure they are let to individuals with a defined need for that type of home.
Within its specialist housing stock SARH also provides a number of Extracare homes, designed for customers with care needs.
How will I know which homes I can apply for?
Due to increasing demand for Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH) empty homes, SARH has reviewed how it calculates how many bedrooms customers are able eligible for.
When your application to SARHomes has been accepted you will be notified of this and the number of bedrooms you will be able to apply for.
The following permanent household members are expected to share a bedroom:
- an adult couple
- 2 children under 18 (of the same sex)
- 2 children under 10 (regardless of sex)
Where medical information is provided which supports an adult couple or child require their own bedroom this will be reflected in the calculation of bedrooms required for that household.
A bedroom will not be allocated to family members who do not live within a household on a permanent basis, this includes families with access to children.
Consideration will be given to approved Foster Carers and allow them to have one spare bedroom.
Couples where the main applicant is age 55 and over will be able to apply for 1 and 2 bedroom homes in our Independent Living Schemes.
When letting bungalows priority will be given to customers who are age 60 and over. Couples where the main applicant is over 60 will be considered for both 1 and 2 bedroom bungalows.
A home may be let to someone who does not fully occupy it when no qualifying applications are received and the customer has the income to pay the rent.
If you’re looking to move, you could swap your home with another customer through the Mutual Exchange process. A Mutual Exchange is a swap of accommodation between two or more customers. It relies on each party moving permanently into their exchange partner’s property. SARH advertises homes that existing customers want to exchange to allow them to move.
Learn more about Mutual Exchanges.