Mutual exchanges

Please note: if you are a home owner, a resident in an almshouse, or a tenant on a six-month assured shorthold tenancy who has paid a deposit, this section may not apply to you.

If you'd like to move, perhaps to a different area where NCHA doesn't have properties, a mutual exchange might be for you. It's a way for tenants of housing associations/social landlords to swap homes with each other.

To do a mutual exchange, the landlords involved will need to give their consent. There are some reasons why they might not give consent, and these are set out in the Housing Act 1985. We might refuse to give you consent if:

  • You are behind with your rent 
  • You are on a starter tenancy
  • You've had a court order made against you for breach of tenancy, or are under a notice of seeking possession of your home
  • The property you want to move to would be too big or too small for the number of people involved
  • You've damaged your home and we want you to make repairs first 
  • The home you live in has been designed or adapted for people with special needs or disabilities.

Organising a mutual exchange

In most cases, mutual exchanges are organised using online tools like HomeSwapper. They help you find people who are looking to move to the area you live in.

  1. Contact us to check whether we'd be willing to support you to do a mutual exchange - the list above outlines reasons why we might have to say no.
  2. Look on mutual exchange websites like HomeSwapper (see below) to find someone who is willing to swap with you.
  3. Complete our mutual exchange application form - contact us for a copy.


HomeSwapper is an online service that helps connect tenants who are looking to move house and want to do a mutual exchange. We pay HomeSwapper a fee so that all our tenants can access the service. You can search for homes by area, and you'll usually be able to see photos of what's available. You can sign up for email or text alerts when new homes come up that match your criteria. 

If you don't have internet access, we can help you register, and send you details of suitable properties. 

There are other systems that offer a similar service - some local authorities host pages that help tenants find someone to swap with, for example. Contact us for details.