Housing associations launch £160m partnership

Manchester-based Trafford Housing Trust, and London housing association L&Q have formed a joint venture to build 2,000 homes across the North West in the next four years.

Both parties are contributing £80m each to fund the development pipeline. The agreement marks L&Q’s first partnership outside the South East.

According to the joint venture, the agreement will enable a faster pace of housebuilding in the region, and enable larger, more complex projects to be delivered. It will expand the Trust’s footprint beyond Trafford to incorporate projects in other Greater Manchester boroughs such as Stockport and Salford, and there are also plans to develop schemes across the wider region including Cheshire and Cumbria.

Initially the partnership said it will develop around 500 homes a year. Of the new homes, 25% will be affordable houses for first time buyers, 25% for affordable rent and 50% for market rent and sale. Any profits generated from the joint venture will be reinvested back into the local area.

Last year, Trafford Housing Trust began its foray into the private residential market with the launch of Laurus Homes. Under the Laurus brand, it is delivering a number of high-end schemes for sale, at Arcon Place and Welman Way in Altrincham, and Cross Street in Sale. Laurus has a target of 100 new homes each year, and this will be delivered in addition to the partnership with L&Q.

In addition, the Trust is developing a number of affordable housing, mixed-use and assisted living new build projects across the borough.

Legal arrangements for the joint venture are expected to be completed this autumn, with the first housing schemes due to commence in early 2017.

Matthew Gardiner, chief executive of Trafford Housing Trust, said: “We know that good quality affordable housing to rent and to own provides a sense of safety and financial security for the many people currently living in unsatisfactory conditions. In L&Q we have found a progressive and like-minded partner that shares our ambitions to build more homes and to help more people out of poverty.

“It is clear that the combination of Trafford Housing Trust’s knowledge of the local housing market with L&Q’s formidable capacity as a housebuilder, and our shared vision to create neighbourhoods people want to live in, will result in a unique and exciting offering at scale to the North West housing market.”

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