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About the Association of Housing Advice Services

History

The Association of Housing Advice Services was founded in the late 1980s by a group of managers in statutory housing advice services who saw the need to meet regularly to exchange ideas and promote the value of their service. In those days housing advice was the Cinderella of housing needs and very much under constant threat.
 

Over 20 years on, housing advice and options services are at the forefront of housing departments, and have taken the lead in developing housing strategy to respond and meet housing need in an evolving housing agenda.
 

AHAS' activities have supported and promoted the professionalism of the sector and encouraged the development of new ideas.

 

 

Aims of the Association

  • The promotion and understanding of local authority and voluntary housing advice services and housing advice and options in general.

  • To promote good practice in housing advice and options services.

  • To raise awareness of issues within private sector housing.
     

AHAS is a not for profit unincorporated association. AHAS does not levy any membership fees. AHAS' income derives from its conferences and all profits are channelled into its activities.
 

AHAS is managed by an elected executive who manage housing advice and options services. The executive is assisted by a coordinator.
 

AHAS is open to all statutory and directly contracted services whose primary and main function is the provision of housing advice and options to
the public.

 

Although London based AHAS representatives come from all over England to attend meetings. AHAS believes that there are centres of excellence in very small authorities and that we can all learn from each other.
 

The organisation is directed at managers.
 

The rules of the association are available for download in our Documents section.

 

 

Meetings and networking

AHAS meets 4 times a year in London.  Key speakers and practitioners will address a topical issue or service development.  Recent meetings have featured a variety of speakers on enhanced housing options and worklessness; practical responses to dealing with overcrowding; and changes to housing benefit and homelessness legislation.
 

In addition delegates will be informed of new development in housing law, hear about new trends and issues in the sector as they happen, and have the opportunity to discuss organizational issues and network with other managers.
 

All information and presentations are posted on the AHAS website. A housing law digest is posted on the website.
 

Regular attendees describe out meetings as extremely useful and informative. 
 

AHAS provides a forum and network for managers. Managers communicate with each other between meetings to seek advice and exchange ideas.

 

 

Conferences and training

AHAS has organised 5 national conferences on housing advice and options. From time to time AHAS will organize smaller seminars on a relevant topic.
 

Responses to consultation

AHAS responds to all relevant government consultations and engages with government department to discuss and improve housing advice services
and delivery.

 

Research

AHAS commissioned research in 2010 on private rented sector landlords' attitude to working with local authorities and published a report, "Giving landlords what they want: private renting best practice". This is a must have toolkit for any local authority looking to access private sector lets for
their applicants.


Giving Landlords What They Want (1.82 MB)
 

Prior to this AHAS developed the first Housing Advice Performance Indicators (HAPIs) which led to the Homelessness Preventions BVPIs
.  
AHAS PI Guidance (682.87 kB)
 

Joining

If you want to join and attend meetings send us an email to info@ahas.org.uk and if you qualify to join the organisation we will add you to our mailing list.