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Housing project will create new shared ownership opportunities in Gnosall
WORK on a groundbreaking £3million project to create 30 new affordable rented and shared ownership properties in Gnosall has been launched by Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH).
To mark the National Housing Federation’s National Shared Ownership week (March 18-22), SARH held a launch event for its new housing development on Lowfield Lane, which will include 13 homes available through shared ownership.
Parish councillors from Gnosall and representatives from the developers Thomas Vale and Housing Plus, who will manage the build for SARH, were amongst those who attended the event, which included a display of artist’s impressions of the new homes.
Shared ownership is an opportunity for people who want to get a foot on the property ladder but can’t afford to buy a home outright on the open market.
Under the scheme SARH can sell 40 per cent to 80 per cent of a new build leasehold property and the customer will then pay a subsidised rent on the part they don’t own. The bigger the share a person buys, the less rent they have to pay.
In most cases, as the customer becomes able to afford it they can buy additional shares up to the 80 per cent – this is known as ‘staircasing’.
“At a time when first-time buyers and private buyers face a serious challenge to afford a new home, shared ownership can help boost local communities and economies by encouraging aspiration, offering stability and allowing people to take up employment opportunities,” said Karen Armitage, Chief Executive of SARH.
The Lowfield Lane development is also a rural exception site that will include a range of two to four bedroom homes.
A rural exception site is rural land that would not usually gain planning permission for housing but which can be released for affordable housing projects if the plan meets strict planning requirements and there is a proven local need for affordable housing for rent and home ownership.
The project was started when SARH and Gnosall Parish Council highlighted a need for more affordable housing in the village.
A site appraisal of the village was commissioned to identify potential sites for development and an open public consultation was held before Lowfield Lane was chosen as the preferred site.
“This is our second rural exception development in Stafford Borough and it has taken a great deal of effort from all the partners Gnosall Parish Council, SARH, Stafford Borough Council and Housing Plus to get the building work underway,” said Karen Armitage.
The project, which has been supported with a £770,696 development grant from the Homes and Communities Agency, also includes the recently completed building of five new affordable rented homes and one shared ownership property, on Monks Walk, in Gnosall.
The Lowfield Lane development is due to be completed in the winter of 2013.
For more information about Shared Ownership at Lowfield Lane or across the Stafford Borough please contact Debbie Williams Leasehold Management Officer for SARH on 0800 111 4554.