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  Jade's story - "Finding an exchange was easy. Moving was the hard part"

Jade had been living in her 3 bedroom home with her daughter for the past 8 years. The housing market was a different world a decade ago and her landlord had thought nothing of offering her a property with a spare bedroom. Since then, the social housing landscape has changed and Jade told us that because she was “unable to work due to poor health” she had to find an addition £130 a month to cover the under occupation penalty. This coupled with nagging feelings of isolation from being in a secluded development encouraged her to find a new home.

Jade had heard that she could find a new home by mutual exchange and her landlord was a partner of House Exchange which meant she could register for free. Without further ado, she signed up in early February 2016 and found she had matches right away. Having spotted a property that looked ideal she arranged a viewing later that month and testifies that “we liked each other’s properties right away”. The two parties agreed a swap and despite the moving process taking longer than expected it’s all a distant memory now.

Jade’s now closer to her mother and her daughter’s got into a good school that’s close by. The property meets all her needs and when taking into account her reduced energy bills, she’s saving £160 a month! She concluded by saying “everything’s easier here” with “much more hustle and bustle” this has resulted in a “real improvement in my overall health” and my daughter’s “much happier” too.


  Terence joined House Exchange because he wanted to move somewhere different.

Terence wasn’t in any rush because he was caring for a family member, but spent periods of time actively searching and said that if he needed to “just move anywhere” he could have done so “in just a couple of weeks”. That said he took his time and was delighted when he first discovered Marley’s house.

Marley had recently moved her son to a different school and needed to relocate her whole family to the same area. She first heard about House Exchange via Facebook and thought it wouldn’t do any harm to sign up.

Terence and Marley both found the website easy to operate with Marley adding that she liked that it was “straightforward and user friendly” – the whole journey took her around 2 months. In fact, neither Terence nor Marley had anything negative to say about House Exchange and both found their time using the website a positive experience. Terence said that the whole mutual exchange process was “…all good” and is very happy with his new home.

Communication between the two was good from the beginning and they are still in contact - Marley believes that they will remain so as “Terence now lives next door to my Mum!”


  Nadia - she really wanted to have a fresh start

Nadia had tried moving through House Exchange a while ago but could not find her perfect match. She has four children ages 15, 12, 6 and 3. As a family they had experienced a tough hard year and really wanted to have a fresh start. They were living in a 4 bed flat with a small garden, but the flat had a spiral staircase which was not great with young children.

She decided to try House Exchange again, she took lots of photos of her flat and was very honest with the description as did not wish to waste anyone else’s time, and also did not wish to be misleading. From advertising her home the whole process took only 2 months. The lady she swapped with needed to be near her mother for support who was just around the corner. They exchanged details with each other and then met up over a weekend.

Together they completed the landlord mutual exchange forms on the Sunday and got the forms to both relevant landlords the Monday morning. This she said really helped escalate the process as they could ask each other questions relating to the forms. On the day of the move, they met up a few days before and swapped car loads of belongings to ease the pressure on the actual day. Each hired a van, though one was quite small, so they ended up sharing the vans and moving each other’s furniture and possessions together. Nadia said it was so friendly and easy, both being so very grateful to be moving.  


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House Exchange is a joint initiative between Clarion Housing Group and 101Smart Ltd.

Clarion Housing Group Limited is a charitable registered society (Reg No 28038R). Registered with the Regulator for Social Housing (Reg No LH4087) VAT No (675 646 394). Registered office: Level 6, 6 More London Place, Tooley Street, London SE1 2DA.

101 Smart Ltd is a registered limited company in England (Reg No 5294196). Registered office: Unit 15 Beech Avenue, Taverham, Norfolk NR8 6HW.