Havering Council in joint deal to purchase 82 homes in Romford

Havering Council has jointly completed a purchase of 82 brand new homes in Romford, to help tackle some of the housing shortage for family-sized homes.

The leader of the council, Councillor Damian White and Councillor Joshua Chapman, cabinet lead for housing, along with Patrick Odling-Smee, director for housing, and Garry Green from Mercury Land Holdings were on site to tour the site with Nick Langley and colleagues from Hollybrook, on Monday July 6, where they were officially handed the keys to the high-quality properties.

The new homes, which are part of the Hollybrook Development on Crow Lane, were purchased by a joint venture partnership between Mercury Land Holdings and Havering Council. The new homes range from 1-bedroom apartments to a large number of 4-bedroom family homes.

As part of the purchase, 38 properties (33 four-bedroom and 5 three-bedroom homes) will be used as affordable housing, providing much-needed larger, high-quality homes for bigger families, and reducing the levels of overcrowding in the borough. The remainder will be used for the private rented market, managed by Mercury Land Holdings.

Despite a short delay due to the coronavirus lockdown, the new properties are expected to all be available by autumn 2020, with the first properties available in July.

The purchase comes as part of a wider plan to ensure the council is responsive to the borough’s changing housing needs, including a programme to buy back former Council properties for use by local families, and plans to deliver high-quality homes the borough through regeneration projects.

Cllr Chapman said: “Whilst our regeneration projects are going to deliver new homes and communities in the future, we have to address the immediate shortage in short-term supply, especially the lack of four-bedroom affordable housing.

“Purchasing the Crow Lane development will ensure we have a strong stock of good-quality homes for local families across Havering ready to move into now.’’

“I’m really excited about this opportunity, and I’m proud that we’ve been able to take quick action, alongside our regeneration and buy-back programmes, to make sure we can provide for Havering families today.”

Mick Ferris

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