Plans for rental homes at be­low mar­ket rates

Macclesfield Express - - HOMES -

A NEW pi­o­neer­ing £400m pro­gramme has been launched in the UK to boost the build­ing of new af­ford­able rental homes avail­able at be­low mar­ket rates.

Cur­rent schemes like Help to Buy have boosted house build­ing and al­lowed 53,000 house­holds to buy a home with a frac­tion of the de­posit they would nor­mally re­quire.

And now the gov­ern­ment wants to do the same for the rental mar­ket.

Com­mu­ni­ties Sec­re­tary Eric Pick­les said that the new Rent to Buy pro­vides more flex­i­bil­ity for peo­ple who want to rent af­ford­ably now, save for a de­posit, and then ei­ther buy the new home or a dif­fer­ent home later.

Un­der the scheme, hous­ing as­so­ci­a­tions and other providers can bid for a share of £400m in low cost loans to build up to 10,000 new homes across the coun­try from 2015 to 2018.

They will mainly con­sist of one and two-bed­room apart­ments.

Land­lords must make the homes avail­able for rent at be­low mar­ket rates for a min­i­mum of seven years.

Mr Pick­les said this fixed pe­riod would give ten­ants the op­por­tu­nity to save up for a de­posit and get ready to buy their own home.

At the end of the pe­riod, the ten­ant will have first re­fusal to buy the prop­erty or al­ter­na­tively they may choose to move out and buy a dif­fer­ent prop­erty, or rent another prop­erty ei­ther pri­vately or with the hous­ing as­so­ci­a­tion.

If the home is sold, the hous­ing as­so­ci­a­tion will then have the op­tion to use any re­turns on their in­vest­ment to build even more af­ford­able homes in the area.

Al­ter­na­tively, they will still have a home, which they can look to rent at an af­ford­able rate to another ten­ant who needs help to buy.

This pro­gramme is part of a broader £23bn af­ford­able homes pro­gramme for 2015 to 2018, as well as other schemes like Help to Buy pro­vid­ing low de­posit mort­gages and Right to Buy which pro­vides home own­er­ship for coun­cil ten­ants.

He pointed out that th­ese schemes are be­ing ar­ranged now, so con­struc­tion works starts from 2015.

He said: “This gov­ern­ment is stand­ing by peo­ple who work hard and do the right thing, and help­ing them move on and up in life.

“Both house build­ing and the num­ber of first-time buy­ers are now at their high­est rate since 2007.

“But there is more to do.

“As part of our wider hous­ing pro­gramme, this new scheme will help in­crease the pro­vi­sion of low cost rented ac­com­mo­da­tion and pro­vide a spring­board for young peo­ple to up­grade to home own­er­ship down the line,” he added.

●● A pi­o­neer­ing rental pro­gramme has been launched

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