Hounslow Council To Buy Back Former Council Housing
More than 500 homes to be acquired under new scheme
Hounslow Council is planning to bring back more that 555 homes into its ownership under a new scheme being launched by the Mayor of London.
Sadiq Khan’s Right to Buy-back scheme gives local authorities the opportunity to re-acquire homes some of which were previously sold under Right-to Buy.
Hounslow’s participation is the largest of any London borough and it will receive £38.7m from the Mayor’s Right to Buy-back fund which launched in July. Islington was the first borough to take advantage of the scheme, signing up in September. The fund gives boroughs and council-owned housing companies the ability to purchase homes from the open market. These homes can then either be let at social rent levels or used to prevent homelessness. The first families could be moving in by early January. All homes purchased through the Mayor’s Right to Buy-back fund must meet the Government’s Decent Homes Standard.
20 family-sized homes will be ringfenced for Afghan nationals who have been granted leave to resettle in the UK.
Hounslow will purchase a further 25 homes and convert these to social rented homes specifically for care leavers on the housing register. Councils have a duty of care to teenagers leaving the care system but unfortunately many still end up struggling to find accommodation. Nationally, one third of care leavers become homeless in the first two years immediately after they leave care. These homes and the support offered by the council as a Corporate Parent.
Hounslow says it is already on track to deliver their target of 618 new council homes through the Mayor’s Building Council Homes for Londoners programme, for which they have so far received over £35m in funding from the Mayor.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said, “I am delighted that Hounslow has committed to bringing so many properties back into council ownership, providing good quality and genuinely affordable homes to more than 500 families.
“London has a wonderful tradition of helping those in need, and I’m proud that Hounslow is now stepping up to house Afghan refugees and vulnerable care leavers as part of this deal.
“Hounslow joins Islington in taking swift, bold action to help deliver the homes Londoners so desperately need. I’m hopeful that other boroughs will look to them and submit their own proposals. We also need to see ambition from Ministers to replicate the ‘Right to Buy-back’ scheme nationally, giving councils and housing associations the support they need to purchase much-needed homes.”
Leader of Hounslow Council, Councillor Steve Curran, said, “We are delighted to have received this allocation of funding from the Mayor’s Right to Buyback scheme; it will enable us to provide more council homes for those that need them. Some of these homes will give safety and security to care-leavers, and some to Afghan refugee families, who will be welcomed into our local communities."
December 26, 2021