Housing officers are involved with the day to day management of rented properties for local authorities and housing associations.
You could be:
interviewing new tenants, considering their needs, deciding how suitable they are and allocating housing
arranging agreements with tenants, giving advice on benefits they could apply for and organising rent collections
taking account of the needs of special groups such as those with disabilities, older people or asylum seekers
inspecting houses or flats to check their condition and arranging repairs
dealing with anti-social tenants and those who break agreements, abandoned tenancies and squatters
dealing with social services and other welfare organisations
preparing cases for court and representing your organisation in court cases
meeting individual tenants or tenants’ associations to discuss housing problems or property exchanges
dealing with rent payments and arrears.
The figures below are only a guide. Actual pay rates may vary, depending on:
where you work
the local authority or organisation you work for
the demand for the job.
Starting salaries for housing assistants in Scotland tend to be around £20,000 to £22,000 a year. Housing officers can earn around £32,000 and £37,000 a year. Managers can earn over £34,000 a year.
You would be based in an office.
You would sometimes have to visit tenants in their homes and carry out inspections.
You would also need to visit properties and the offices of related organisations.
You would work normal office hours, but may have to work some evenings.
You may be able to work part time.
Workforce Employment Status
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There is no single entry route to this job. Although some entrants have a degree most employers prefer experience to qualifications.
You might take a degree in a subject such as property management, social policy or public administration. Entry requirements for a degree are 4-5 Highers, usually including English.
Some employers ask for a Scottish Vocational Qualification (SVQ) in Housing at Level 4, or a National Certificate (NC) in a subject such as business.
You could study part time at college on a day release, evening or distance learning basis, leading to a Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) Certificate in Housing Practice or Diploma in Housing.
You could take a postgraduate qualification in housing studies. In Scotland these are available at the Universities of Glasgow (course not running 2019/20 but available 2020/21) and Stirling.
You may be able to start with a local authority or housing association in a clerical or administrative post and study part time to become a housing officer. You would normally need to have at least 3-4 subjects at National 4 including English.
For most posts you need a driving licence.
Workforce Education Levels (UK)
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Job Outlook Scotland
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EMSI UK What Does it Take?
You should be:
able to work well under pressure
good at negotiating
tactful and diplomatic
able to take criticism and cope with stressful situations
encouraging to other staff
able to work on your own
able to keep accurate records
able to understand different cultural backgrounds and different needs.
You should have:
a good knowledge of housing laws
good spoken and written communication skills
good IT skills
excellent organisational skills
an understanding of budgets.
You would train and gain experience on the job, combined with study for qualifications relevant to your level of entry.
You could study part time for a qualification awarded by the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH).
If you have a degree, you could take a part time postgraduate qualification in housing.
Some courses are available by distance learning as well as by part time attendance at college.
In many organisations, there is a clear promotion structure.
In a local authority you could follow a promotion route from housing officer to senior officer, through to director level.
You might move on to work for a housing association specialising in homes for older people, homeless or people with disabilities.
Your promotion prospects may be helped if you are prepared to move to different parts of the country.
The following organisations may be able to provide further information.
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