Liverpool City Council set up Foundations last year to create more affordable homes across the city and ease the housing crisis. Tony McDonough reports
Families have started moving in to the first homes built by Liverpool City Council’s housing company Foundations.
As part of its rent-to-buy scheme Foundations has built 14 three-bedroom homes on Park Street in Dingle which people will be able to rent at 80% of the market rent, so they can save the other 20% towards a deposit in order to secure a mortgage.
They will be given an option to buy their home after 12 months and up to five years at a fair market price based upon an independent valuation at the time of purchase. The scheme was available to people who live or work in Liverpool and are either first time buyers or who have had to previously sell a home because of a relationship breakdown.
Other criteria include being in work but unable to buy a home on the open market due to lack of savings for a deposit towards a mortgage.
Among the new neighbours is Julian Gill, 33, and his partner Courtney Greenway, 24. Julian, who is originally from Toxteth, is a videographer and creative designer. He said: “It feels fantastic to be in our new home.
“Having a fresh, new house in a fantastic location has had a really positive impact on our lives. It’s hard to quantify, but it’s a very exciting prospect to know that we’ll one day own this home. It really is the perfect place for a new home and for first time buying, as we have everything we need on our doorstep.
“Before this opportunity came up, I was renting from a private landlord. All of my renting experiences have been negative due to poor maintenance, dreadful communication and lack of transparency.”
Foundations has enhanced the homes on Park Street to include a range of items, including alarms, blinds, white goods and electric appliances, flooring and additional planting to create a high standard of home and also reduce the financial burden of tenants moving in.
Foundations chief executive, Mark Kitts, said: “The aim of our rent-to-buy scheme is to give local people the chance to get a foot on the property ladder and have a stake in their local community.
“This scheme marks the start of an incredibly exciting journey for Foundations. Our vision is to create quality, sustainable homes that help to improve neighbourhoods and the quality of the Liverpool’s housing stock.”