Foundations aims to build 10,000 new homes across Liverpool over the next few years in a £500m project and its rent-to-buy initiative will start with 14 homes in Dingle. Tony McDonough reports
Liverpool’s new ‘ethical’ housing company Foundations is to offer a rent-to-buy scheme to help people get onto the property ladder.
Launched last year by the city council, Foundations aims to build 10,000 new homes across Liverpool over the next few years in a £500m programme that will also benefit local construction firms.
Under the rent-to-buy scheme, people will be able to rent a home at 80% of the market rent, so they can save the other 20% towards a deposit in order to get a mortgage to buy the property.
They will be given an option to buy the home after 12 months and up to five years at a fair market price based on an independent valuation at the time of purchase. It will be available to people who live or work in Liverpool and are either first time buyers or people who have had to sell a home because of a relationship breakdown.
Other criteria include being in work but unable to buy a home on the open market because the household is unable to save a sufficient deposit due to living costs.
Subject to agreement by Liverpool City Council’s cabinet at its meeting on June 21, 14 new family homes at Harrington Row, Park Street, Dingle, will be the first to be included in Foundations rent-to-buy programme.
Foundations Chief Executive Mark Kitts said: “We can make a real difference to people’s lives by giving them an opportunity they would not otherwise get to buy a home for themselves and their families.
“It gives people a stake in their communities and helps us in our broader ambitions to improve neighbourhoods and improve the quality of the city’s housing. At this stage we are only able to offer 14 homes under the scheme.
“We understand that demand might be far in excess of that so we will be working hard to offer new homes under the scheme in the coming months and years. Our promise is to be as fair as we can be in making these opportunities available to people who register their interest.”
Foundations aims to either deliver or commence a number of projects across the city over the next two years. These will deliver a mix of affordable and family housing, including apartments, for both sale and rent, as well as bespoke properties for the homeless, foster carers, large families, the elderly and people with a disability.
The council expects to reveal more details of its council housing plans in the near future but has already identified a site in Yew Tree where new council homes could be built, alongside Foundations own housing.