William Eichler 05 December 2018

Liverpool launches council-owned housing company

Liverpool City Council has today launched a new housing company which aims to help residents onto the housing ladder through a Rent to Buy scheme.

The council-owned company Foundations intends to build and renovate 10,000 homes over the next decade in a £1bn investment programme.

The council has also announced a new Rent to Buy scheme which would enable people to pay reduced rent on Foundations properties. This would allow them to save enough money for a deposit to buy the home they are renting.

‘We recognise that getting the cash together for a deposit can be a major challenge for many first time buyers so the new Rent to Buy scheme will play an invaluable part in addressing this problem,’ said Mayor Joe Anderson.

‘I have also asked the Foundations team to explore other financial incentives and by the time homes are available to buy in 2019 there will be an opportunity for some of those, assessed on a per scheme basis, to be available Rent to Buy or through an alternative incentive.’

It is estimated that Liverpool needs to develop nearly 30,000 new homes by 2030.

Foundations aims to refurbish and renovate properties across the city, as well as developing new builds. There will be a mix of property types, including family homes and apartments.

Frank Hont, chair of Foundations, said: ‘Our ambition for Foundations will be to transform the way housing works for the people of Liverpool.

‘One of the ways we want to achieve this is by giving people from all walks of life the opportunity to get on to the housing ladder who may struggle to otherwise secure a conventional mortgage. 

‘Our intention is that the money from both house sales and rents will then be reinvested back into the Foundations programme to help create even more homes and support more people in our city as they take the first step on to the housing ladder.’

The council has established procurement frameworks to maximise the involvement of local contractors in delivering council contracts, including on Foundations projects.

‘Foundations will be committed to delivering training and skills opportunities for young people in the city,’ said Mark Kitts, chief executive of Foundations.

‘We’ll be working with contractors who will be encouraged to use local supply chains and locally-sourced labour.

‘In addition, we’ll work with providers such as higher education colleges to deliver on-the-job training, including apprenticeships for young people who want to forge a career in the construction industry.

‘Foundations is also keen to work with landowners who share our ethical ambitions.’

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