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Affordable borrowing ?


Dizzy
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Re todays frontpage new on WWW

 

http://www.warrington-worldwide.co.uk/articles/7421/1/20m-loans-for-affordable-housing/Page1.html

 

Should Warrington Council really be borrowing ?20 million over 25 years given their current financial status and then sub-loaning it to the two housing associations who for whatever reason are not able to borrow the money in their own right.

 

.I'ts a bit like me borrowing ?20k then passing it on to someone who either has a bad credit rating or is not deemed suitable or able to have enough funds to pay pay back the loan over the period so therefore are refused?

 

The responsibility to repay the ?20 million will always be on the heads of the loan taker (ie the council in this case) so in effect on all our heads too.

 

Although Cllr Bob Bar says they are 'safeguarding' any risk of non payment by the housing associations by way of Registered Charging Orders a CO only really stops the 'owner' of a property from selling it without first paying off any owed amount charged on it.

 

Maybe the council should just press all the new developers to increase the number of affordable houses on offer through their 106 agreements or actually deliver what is promissed rather than hand over money which gets used elsewhere. That should soon clear the alleged shortfall of 171 homes without the need to borrow millions :)

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Building houses for rent for the increasing number of homeless, to live in properties upon which they will pay Council Tax, would appear a worthwhile endevour. Employing people to build those houses too, and pay taxes from their incom, would appear to be equally worthwhile - so perhaps we should consider it an investment in our local community and economy?! :wink:

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I don't think that those "affordable" houses are affordable for those on "low" income.

 

And at the moment, this is probably the only way we will get council-type properties built.

 

I thought that Warrington Housing Association got their funding from the Government.

The concern that I have is where a tenant is on Housing Benefit. The council will be paying itself in rent, but the loan will not be repaid, if that makes sense.

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Rather confusing article! Are the houses going to be 'affordable' as in social rented or affordable housing of the type that is about as affordable as many other private houses on the market?

 

The fact that warrington has got nowhere near it's required provision for affordable housing yet is circa 20 years over supply for housing in general is non other than disgraceful!

A typical example of the councils priorities!

 

Dismayed, the councils lack of ensuring adequate provision of affordable units via 106 agreements per planning application is what has, over the years caused the present situation. Many opportunities for affordable housing to be provided by developers have been lost or traded in for 'commuted sums'.

The benefits of 106 agreements being spent elsewhere has no doubt enabled the council to make savings in other areas, so the 20 million now being allocated is probably no more than the amount which should have been spent on affordable housing over the years. Pity those in need of these houses have had to wait so long for them to materialise!

 

The fact they are finally going to be provided is probably not because the council have at last realised they are very badly needed but probably to balance the deficit so that plans for further private housing will be allowed to go ahead.

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Most likely as Arena do shared ownership but in the long term is that good or bad for any person who feels they have no alternative way of getting on the housing ladder so to speak?

 

The Arena Housing web site is rather interesting though :wink:

 

As for a 50% share in an appartment/house the person has to secure a mortgage for their half and then pay rent and service charges on the other half.

 

Is it easy to get a mortgage on half a home.....considereing the banks/mortgage companies reluctance to give mortgages to even those who can afford it ?

 

In the case of shared ownsership what happens if the mortgage holder fails to keep up with the mortgage repayments... will the housing association jump in an bail them out or will the mortgage company somehow have to reposess half a home?

 

I presume the price of the 'affordable' home is also based on the local area house prices prices too. :wink:

 

Having just had a quick look at Arena's web site and made some quick calculations I'd hardly class them as AFFORDABLE anyway :shock:

 

2 bedroom apartments starting from: ?48,500 for a 50% share with a weekly rent of ?41.11 plus monthly service charge of approximately ?80.00 and of course mortgage repayments (based on a rate of 3%) would cost in the region of ?470 per month before all other living expenses :cry:

 

Had to wonder though as on the Arena Housing web site it states that You will own a share of your home normally on a 125 year shared ownership lease. The lease remains the responsibility of both you and Arena.

 

I'm going to apply for one if it will increase my life expectancy so much :lol:

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Sadly you are right Obs and having now looked at the web sites for Arena Housing, Warrington Housing Association and Golden Gates Housing and the application process etc etc etc this affordable housing twaddle is not at all what it sounds like.

 

Warrington Housing Association site didn't seem too bad at first glance and many of their homes have obvioulsy be bought/acquired on the open market rather than new build boxes... but then they say they give 50% to Golden Gates Housing .... and Golden Gates Housing say they 'advertise' their's every Thursday and people can then bid on them :?

 

How can you bid on something if you have no money :shock:

 

Maybe the process is not as bad or complicated as it seems and that homes are more easily available for those who really need them......... I'm just so grateful that I am sat in the comfort of my own home and only browsing out of interest and not out of necessity as I think I would have given up or jumped in the canal by now :cry:

 

Such a pity that so many of the council houses we used to have were 'sold off' cheap or not managed properly eh :roll:

 

I remember a bloke at BNFL telling me how his frail elderly mums council house which had once been the family home (3 beds, large garden etc etc ) had been offered to her for purchase at a very very low proce. She couldn't afford to buy it but he could so he lent her the money and she 'paid'... and she subsequently left it to him in her will a few years later :? Happened a lot apparently. :? He sold it for over 5 times the price 'she' had paid for it.

 

Then there was my aunt.... she lived ALONE for 3-6 months of the year in a spacious four bed council house with a large garden round here paid for via benefits and maintained by the council :shock: DESPITE the fact that the kids had all moved out years ago, got jobs and bought their own homes. The other months she spent living elsewhere :evil:

 

I'm rambling again...and I think I have just side-tracked the actual point in question ..... sorry :oops::?

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:lol::lol: Anyway back to Affordable Housing.

 

In Dec 2008 the Councils Overview and Scrutinee Panel reported this regarding Affordable Homes for Local People :

 

? The Council along with it?s partners St. Helens and Halton has prepared and submitted a bid to the Community Infrastructure Fund and submitted the Programme of Development for the Mid Mersey Growth Point. A response to the programme from Government is anticipated at the end of December/early January 2009. This may provide funding to help improve accessibility, open up development sites and increase the delivery of affordable housing.

 

? As part of the emerging affordable housing programme developers are being approached to determine their interest for releasing sites for the delivery of affordable housing. Under the National Affordable Housing Programme ?4.7m was secured to deliver 94 units. Regular market engagement has delivered a further ?2.865m from the Housing Corporation for 67 units at Saxon Park and around a further ?2m for 48 units at Walton Lock (Barratt) to meet code for sustainable homes level 3 and size standards. Further proposals being considered by the Housing Corporation include 91 Units at Carrington Park (Countryside Properties) involving ?5,195,734 social housing grant and 16 units from Miller Homes at various sites with planning permission.

 

? Further schemes are being prepared for the Housing Corporation on former private development sites now working with RSL;s and this could deliver around 250 units in total on various sites. Some sites have been rejected by the Housing Corporation due to the size and standard of units on offer being unacceptable.

 

? Housing and Planning Delivery Grant of ?643k has been confirmed from government to fund delivery of the statutory planning framework to enable housing growth and particularly affordable housing (the grant will provide additional staffing resources to achieve this).

 

 

That's quite a lot of new homes already so what is the ?20 milion loan needed for or is it for point 'one' ie the Halton, St Helens, Warrington bid :?:

 

I wasn't looking for this by the way but it was contained in a document when I was trying to find an online map showing the proposed total area of the Peel Port development site at Moore... which I still can't find :roll: ....... strange I know :lol:

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The documentation for the development of the 'Mid Mersey Growth Point' reads like a horror story. By the time the general public get the gist of what is planned for the future of this town it will be too late for mass exodus because they'll be trapped and unable to leave due to negative equity.

 

The funds being thrown in are in reality merely a bail out for developers.

There is not going to be a mass programme of affordable housing as such, any so called 'affordable' housing which may appear will only do so as a very small percentage of the mass of 'aspirational' private developments.

In the mass urban sprawl which will emerge the amount of 'affordable' housing will be as, if not more than, inadequate than it is at present. :roll:

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