Aberdeen to explore £250m investment options to deliver 2,000 new council homes

Aberdeen City Council is to develop plans for the delivery of 2,000 new council homes following this week’s annual budget meeting.

Elected members have instructed the director of resources to report back to the city growth and resources committee with self-financing business plans, in conjunction with private developers, working within an affordable capital investment sum of £250 million.

The council will also aim to expand its work with the private sector in the provision of affordable housing and will prepare a report detailing land holdings that could be made available.

Those commitments were made as the 2018/19 Housing Revenue Account budget was set.

The budget includes a 2.6% rise in council rents to support continued investment in housing stock.

Jenny Laing

Councillor Jenny Laing, co-leader of Aberdeen City Council, said: “The capital programme in the 2018/19 HRA budget is significant. We are committed to a £42m spend, highlighting the importance we place on housing in the city. It remains a key priority and the budget demonstrates that.

“Investment in existing council homes is vital to maintain and improve the standard of living of our tenants, as is the investment in new council homes both in terms of the multi-million pound plans we are committed to and the plans for 2,000 additional homes we are now developing.

“Following the freeze in rental levels in last year’s budget and in the face of increasing financial pressures, the increase in rent is necessary but has been restricted to 2.6%. We are ever mindful of the financial challenges our tenants are facing on a daily basis.

“It is very easy to look at our housing budget in terms of pounds and pence – the reality is very different. The budget we have set is about people, individuals and families who rely upon Aberdeen City Council to deliver on their behalf. We are committed to continuing to deliver.”

Thousands of council properties will benefit from improvements in 2018/19. More than 1,300 properties are to be rewired in the year ahead and 705 households will have new heating systems installed. More than 370 properties will be upgraded with new doors whilst almost 300 households in multi-storey blocks will benefit from new door entry systems.

Hundreds of kitchen and bathroom replacements are planned and the list of capital projects also includes loft insulation, investment in roof and structural upgrades, wall insulation, communal fire alarms, CCTV, lift replacements in five multi-storey blocks in Hazlehead, energy efficiency schemes and water tank replacements.