Eamonn Boylan, deputy chief executive of Manchester city council, is reportedly due to leave to become deputy chief executive of the new Homes and Communities Agency.
The HCA will be created through the merger of English Partnerships and the Housing Corporation. It is due to become operational in spring 2009.
Boylan is a highly respected right-hand man of Manchester's chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein, and is currently in charge of regeneration.
Sir Bob Kerslake, former chief executive of Sheffield City Council, is the inaugural chief executive of the HCA.
All parties declined to comment.