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The Prime Minister has today set out the next steps in the easing of lockdown. See the press conference at Youtube: Prime Minister's Coronavirus press conference (10 May 2021) for details.

Between 4.00pm on Wednesday 12 May and 7.30am on Thursday 13 May, the following systems will be unavailable due to essential maintenance: our online council tax, business rates and housing benefit overpayments service, our welfare assistance form and our test and trace payments form. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Home exchange, mutual exchange and Homeswap Direct

A mutual exchange is a swap of homes between two or more tenants. Most housing association tenants, have a right to exchange properties, provided that their landlords give approval. Mutual exchanges are a quick way to move into a different property.

Contact us for housing advice by phone - call 03000 268 000 - or by email At this time we're not able to provide advice face to face.

Complete our online form to tell us you are at risk of becoming homeless or contact us as as soon as possible, if you feel that you are at risk.

You can exchange your property with another council or housing association tenant anywhere in the country; perhaps to be closer to family or friends, or nearer work, you are not restricted to the area you currently live in.

How do I apply for mutual exchange?

If you are interested in the mutual exchange scheme then you can:

  • Complete the short online form for mutual exchange at  Durham Key Options: login​  if you are an existing Durham Key Options customer or  Durham Key Options: register your household​ if you have never registered with Durham Key Options (once registered, you can submit the online form); or

  • You can obtain a form to apply for an exchange and advertise your property by contacting any Durham Key Options partner. Please note that if you complete your registration in this way then it will not be possible for a photograph of your property to be included in your advert.

Your property advert

Your advert will appear on the Durham Key Options website for a period of three months. After the initial three month period your advert will expire automatically. If you have not found a suitable exchange during this time, then you will need to tell Durham Key Options that you want to continue to advertise for a swap.

You will be sent a reminder seven days before your property advert is due to expire. If you want to continue to advertise your property for exchange then you need to tell us. If you do not contact us, your advert will expire and other customers will not be able to view your property.

What happens when you have found an exchange?

If you want to exchange, you and the tenant you want to exchange with must get written permission from your landlord(s) before you can move.

Some checks will be carried out before permission can be granted .Your landlord or your landlord's agent may want to inspect your property and make sure that both properties are suitable and in a good state of repair.

They can also advise you if you need to do something to allow your exchange to continue or if you need to find another exchange.

Please view our frequently asked questions for Mutual Exchange at  Durham Key Options: frequently asked questions​ .

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