Saturday, 31 July 2010

Releasing the Equity in Highland's Council Houses

From the Highland Council web pages:

Highland Councillors are being asked to consider investigating the feasibility of a pioneering new model of providing much-needed affordable homes in the Highlands.

It could see a new build programme of 650 houses over a five year period.

The idea is for the Council to work with a private sector partner to release the equity currently tied up in its Council houses. As houses become vacant they would transfer to the private sector partner in return for a capital payment. The capital would be used to build new houses for let as Council tenancies.

A key point to note is that the Council would continue to allocate, manage and maintain the stock, based on agreed fees per unit to be paid to the council by the partner.

The transferred houses would be relet to applicants on the Highland Housing Register at rent levels pitched between the average council rent and private rents, currently estimated at £75 per week (charged over 52 weeks). The average council rent for the current financial year is £59.76 (over 52 weeks).

Properties would revert to Council ownership at nil cost after 25 years.

Full item click here

Monday, 26 July 2010

Mr Shapps village dreams - update

From the Planning blog:

Take today’s announcement from Grant Shapps (himself a regular twitterer) on the ‘Community Right to Build’ scheme which will allow referendums in rural areas on new small housing developments, thus bypassing the planning system.

Why not catch up with the views of Planners on this issue via Planning magazine's blog; click here

The latest from today's Planning Daily:

The government's Community Right to Build policy could actually "disempower" communities, the RTPI has warned. Click here

Housing Policy Discussion; Do You Want to Join in?

The text below is taken from the Scottish Government Web site:

Housing is at the heart of our everyday lives. It binds our communities, contributes to our wellbeing, stores our wealth, drives our energy consumption and affects our job and health opportunities.

This is the home of a broad discussion about housing policy, one which is taking place throughout the summer with events across the country discussing the various themes that make up Housing: Fresh Thinking, New Ideas.

Have a look over the get involved section to see how easy it is to join in.

To read the views of one architect click here