Liverpool to manage first council homes in 30 years

The city council has secured cabinet backing to operate 74 properties in Yew Tree, the first homes to be directly managed by the council since it overhauled its housing delivery model in July. 

The homes are part of the 105-unit Denford Road development being delivered by Birkenhead-based developer Lovell Partnerships and designed by DK Architects.

The plans were approved in March 2019, however, under a fresh arrangement, Liverpool City Council is to operate 74 of the units on a mix of tenures as council housing once they complete in January 2023. 

The council this summer set up the Strategic Housing Delivery Team, a new housing delivery panel headed up by Mark Kitts, chief executive of Liverpool’s arms length housing management organisation Liverpool Foundation Homes, its development director Louise Davies, and representatives from Liverpool City Council.

The new panel will be responsible for the delivery of council-owned housing and the sourcing of other viable portfolio sites, and it involved the significant scaling back of Liverpool Foundation Homes.

The ALMO, which was set up tp deliver housing on behalf of the council at a time when in-house delivery would have seen the authority heavily penalised and debt-laden under local government financing rules at the time,  will continue to deliver its current portfolio sites and then will be subsumed within the council.  

The Denford Road project forms part of a council strategy to build and retrofit up to 10,000 homes by 2030.

Under the plans, the development will comprise 105 homes – a mix of two-, three- and four-bedroom houses and one- and two-bedroom bungalows. Riverside Housing Association will operate an additional 31 homes on land it owns within the site. 

Lovell Partnerships aims to start on site next month, although delivery of the scheme is subject to the receipt of a grant from government body Homes England and the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority. 

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said: “The private rented sector in this city is imbalanced and the absence of council homes has left many families exposed to market forces. 

“We have a vision for a Liverpool where the council provides quality affordable homes, to buy and to rent, which cater for all manner of families and individuals and provides a sustainable platform for them to move up the housing ladder.

“This scheme is the beginning of realising that vision.”  

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