Working in housing is not just about the bricks and mortar - it’s about making a positive difference to people’s lives, their communities and their life chances by providing them with a decent home and environment in which to live.

A career in housing is exciting and can provide an incredible variety of options, from housing management to resident involvement and from development to supported housing – to mention just a few. Put simply, if you want to make a positive difference, working in housing is for you!

Working in housing is a skilled job. Front line housing officers are supporting vulnerable people and dealing with complex situations on a day-to-day basis, and all housing workers regularly make decisions which impact on the lives of tenants.

A job in housing, therefore, requires a particular set of skills and knowledge, and it is vital that those working in the sector work to acquire these and to keep them up to date. And values are also important. Those working in housing must conduct themselves in an ethical manner at all times.

These demands, for specific skills, knowledge and values, are the defining features of a ‘profession’. While it might never be an absolute requirement for those working in the housing sector to be qualified, in the way that doctors and accountants have to be, it is still important to demonstrate these qualities. There are four different types of membership to recognise how you are progressing as you move through your career. Members are also bound by our code of ethics.

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What kinds of roles are available?

Below are some of the most common roles in housing. They describe what the role entails and what skills and experience someone doing the role would need. This is by no means an exhaustive list, and you may sometimes see similar roles described using different terms by different employers.

Housing officer
Housing organisations vary enormously but they all have on thing in common, they need to manage the homes they own and they need people to do it for them.
Housing options officer
This is a job that helps people to avoid homelessness by exploring and understanding their housing options.
Income officer
This job focuses on making sure that tenants and leaseholders know how to pay rent and service charges.
Supported housing worker
The overall aim of this job is to help people to live independently, safely and happily as possible. Supported housing might be provided by councils, housing associations, charities or voluntary groups.
Resident involvement officer
This job may vary between organisations; tenant participation officer, community involvement officer, tenant and resident involvement officer, but the activities will be broadly similar.
Development project manager
This job helps to increase the number of new homes. Housing associations are the main providers of new affordable homes and many have quite big development teams.
This job can make a real and lasting impact on peoples' lives. It involves designing new towns or villages, improving communities and the environment and more.
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Surveyors shape the way we live. From our towns and cities to our streets and homes, they help create safer, better, happier communities.
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Other opportunities
In addition to the traditional housing roles, most landlords also employ a range of other non-housing specialities. These employees provide other skills and experience which are essential in order to run a business effectively.