15. Applicants Who Have Refused an Offer of Housing
15.1 Landlords can impose a suspension where the applicant has refused one or more reasonable offers of housing and the landlord considers the refusal of that number of offers to be unreasonable. As section 20B only applies to suspensions imposed at the point of application, most applicants will not have received any offers of housing and therefore in practice this provision is likely to be little used.
15.2 Many landlords, within their existing allocation policies, impose a limit on the number of offers that an applicant can have before they suspend their application, as a way of limiting void times and rent loss. In addition in some areas there is pressure on supply of certain types of housing and appropriate alternative offers may not be available. Landlords’ rules around such suspensions should be clearly set out in their allocations policy and applicants and tenants should be made aware of the rules on refusing reasonable offers of housing when offers are made to them.
15.3 Landlords should make sure that they have detailed, accurate and up to date information about applicants’ requests and preferences in relation to the type of housing they are seeking, to ensure that, as far as possible, applicants receive offers that match their needs.