Magazine article Public Finance

RSLs Given Grants to Let Unsold Homes

Magazine article Public Finance

RSLs Given Grants to Let Unsold Homes

Article excerpt

Housing associations struggling to sell homes to first-time buyers are being offered grants to turn them into rented accommodation.

The Homes and Communities Agency says it will compensate associations for lost income if they temporarily rent homes to people on housing waiting lists - providing the agency receives part of the proceeds when they are eventually sold.

The downturn in the housing market has decimated the low-cost home ownership programme, which associations partly rely on to fund new social housing. A Housing Corporation survey published just before it was wound up last month showed that 9,955 homes remained unsold at the end of October.

Sir Bob Kerslake, chief executive of the HCA, said it recognised that the loss or postponement of sales receipts had a serious impact on the ability of registered social landlords to subsidise development schemes.

The agency would share the risk of converting homes to social rented housing, providing that it benefited from any subsequent growth in value ahead of their sale. …

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