The first home bought by Torbay Council in a bid to help meet the needs of homeless families is ready to move into.
The home is one of 37 which will be used to assist people in urgent need of temporary accommodation who find themselves homeless.
The council is working with Phi Capital Investments (Phi), who will source and acquire the properties on behalf of the council and refurbish them to meet Decent Homes and sustainable energy standards.
The council has borrowed £10m to fund the purchase and renovation costs. Rental income will be used to pay the loan repayment costs, management and repairs.
The properties will house families of various sizes and will be located throughout all of Torbay. They will range from two beds to five beds so will be suitable for families of varying sizes.
So far 23 homes are in the process of being acquired or have been purchased.
Because they are a temporary solution, they will provide many people with initial shelter while they seek homes of their own. It’s estimated the homes will help more than 600 people a year.
Councillor Steve Darling, Leader of Torbay Council, said: “We’re all too aware that many households struggle to find decent homes and end up staying in bed and breakfast and other holiday-based accommodation for far too long.
“This is not sustainable in the long-term. Not only is it costly for the council, it is not fair for families to be living somewhere that doesn’t have adequate access to cooking and laundry facilities.”
Councillor Darren Cowell, Deputy Leader of Torbay Council, said: “Working with Phi has allowed us to purchase our own supply of temporary accommodation, which will mean more stability for people. I’d like to thank Phi for working hard to get this home renovated and habitable.
“Phi will be employing the services of local tradespeople and suppliers, which will provide a boost to Torbay’s economy.”
Omar Al-Hasso, Managing Director at Phi Capital, said: “We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Torbay Council delivering this much needed housing. Safe, clean affordable housing is the cornerstone to helping families get their lives back on track. We are looking forward to the first residents moving in next week, and a steady stream of 36 more homes being handed over soon after.”
-Torbay has a growing number of people needing temporary and permanent accommodation yet faces a shortage of properties.
-There are currently 180 households in Torbay in temporary accommodation, with more than 50% being families.
-The main reason for people losing their home is loss of private rented accommodation due to rising costs and landlords selling properties. People also find themselves homeless due to breakdowns in family relationships.
-Torbay only has eight per cent of social housing compared with the national average of 18 per cent and higher than average rental accommodation at 26%.
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