Isle of Wight council consider setting up company to build affordable homes

The Isle of Wight council’s cabinet are considering setting up a company to “build and manage homes long-term to meet local needs”.

building site

This in from the council, in their own words. Ed

Councillors are considering plans to take delivery of 24 properties from Pan developer Barratt to kick start a supply of new affordable homes available for Island residents.

The move would see the Newport housing come into Isle of Wight Council control in lieu of the land value of the site, ahead of the development’s projected completion in 2028, a Cabinet report has said.

Form company to build and manage
One option in front of councillors is to set up a company to build and manage homes long-term to meet local needs, and also for sale at market value, with the Pan properties the start of that process.

This would involve developing existing council sites to address affordable housing needs as the opportunity arises.

The report, before the council’s Cabinet tonight (Thursday), said deciding to take action would “help the council begin to address the urgent housing needs of the local community”.

Government removed borrowing cap
Leader of the Isle of Wight council, Cllr Dave Stewart, said:

“The lack of affordable housing on the Island is a big issue and this report looks at a variety of options for the council to really intervene in the market to develop and manage affordable homes.

“Initially we will have to invest the council’s money in each scheme on a case-by-case basis, but now that the Government has removed the borrowing cap for councils that build and manage their own homes, we need to look closely at accessing this extra source of funding to speed up our rate of delivery of new homes.

“The idea of taking those 24 houses at Pan would very much start this process and means we have homes available quickly, if it is agreed by Cabinet. We could then develop this approach or others to ensure we really do see more affordable homes built in the years to come.”

Average house prices versus average salary
Housing affordability remains an issue on the Island with the average house price around £215,000 and an average salary of £25,000.

More affordable homes would also cut down on the use of temporary accommodation, which is costing the council on average £1.4 million a year.

The report said at least 222 affordable homes are needed each year on the Island up to 2026, with around 65 percent of those needing to be one and two-bedroom properties.

Details can be found in the report below.

Image: Gene Hunt under CC BY 2.0

Thursday, 8th November, 2018 9:41am



Filed under: Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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6 Comments on "Isle of Wight council consider setting up company to build affordable homes"

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The removal of the borrowing cap by the government has opened up possiblities for councils to re-engage with the housing market which is a good thing. How councils are going to go about it is going to be interesting. The article suggests that the council take completed houses from Barratts in lieu of the site land value but I doubt that the IWC has the brains to… Read more »
Oh please God NO !!!!! They give existing properties and attractions away for a tenner, massivly overspend and cock-up the floating Bridge, cannot take care of our existing infrastructure, leave missery and despair with each passing year, squander millions including paying almost half a million quid on jobs for the boys and now they want to build ‘affordable’ housing. Affordable to this lot will be million pound… Read more »

I wouldn’t let this bunch of losers/wasters be in charge of a Lego House, let alone real housing….

This appears to be a case of reinventing the wheel by people who do not have any experience or knowledge of wheels. There are two large and some small housing associations on the Island. They have expertise in buying, building, and managing social housing. They are non-profit and charitable organisations. Given the financing, they can produce housing quicker than a Council. Surely this is the path the… Read more »
Is the true story that they need to find jobs for the managers that have been successful in palming off expenditure to town councils so have nothing to do? Agreed housing associations have the management in place and learnt how best to manage housing stock.Look around at most council property and maintenance is hap hazard.Before we have lots more people moving to the Island we need a… Read more »

Lets just hope that Ian Ward has nothing to do with this otherwise its going to be a great big clusterf***