B&NES plan to borrow £12m for properties
Stephen Sumner Local democracy reporter @stephensumner15 | 07741 295876 email@example.com
Borrowing £12million to buy two investment properties could bring in more than £300,000 a year for Bath and North East Somerset Council to keep services running.
Authority leader Tim Warren and cabinet member Charles Gerrish have signed off the purchases but their locations have not yet been made public. B&NES Council owns approximately 1,200 properties collectively worth more than £500million. Members agreed a £47.5million budget in February to buy more property in a bid to generate an additional £1.475million a year. The first property is a recently built industrial unit with office, production and warehouse space that is expected to generate an income to the council of £144,050 a year, after costs. The purchase price of £5.75million has been agreed in principle. The property is just outside the council boundary, but the authority wants to diversify its portfolio and there are no suitable office and industrial investments within its borders. The second property is a purposebuilt food store and six shops that were constructed in the 1980s. It boasts a 214-space car park. B&NES Council has agreed in principle to buy it for £5.7million. After costs, the property is expected to bring in £190,923 a year. The £12.17million total for these two properties includes professional fees. It will be funded by long-term borrowing. According to the council website, the property portfolio is split into two main areas. There are “operational assets” such as schools, depots, car parks, libraries, offices, allotments, public conveniences, leisure centres, heritage properties, parks and other open spaces. It also owns a number of investment properties, mainly in the centre of Bath, which produce a significant income to supplement service delivery.