50 new affordable homes to be built on Skye
Members the Skye and Raasay committee recently discussed a report focusing on local housing issues in the region, as well as examining the council’s performance against a number of national indicators from April 2017 to March 2018.
Chair of the committee, Cllr John Gordon, said 50 new affordable homes are expected to be delivered in 2018/19, with work starting on site for another 80 new homes.
“The council continues to identify Skye as a priority area for new affordable housing supply,” he said.
“Within our current Strategic Housing Investment Plan we have a programme to build 329 new affordable homes in the area by 2021, 313 of these homes will be for social rent.
“We are currently expecting to complete the construction of 50 new affordable homes in 2018/19 and will start on site with another 80 new homes built by both the council and Lochalsh & Skye Housing Association to meet the demand for social housing in our area.
“We operate a common housing register and have strong partnership arrangements with the association which means that the new build programme helps us address homelessness pressure.”
Overall, the average response time for emergency repairs to council houses continues to be within the Highland target of 14 hours. Committee members were also advised that although there had been a slight increase in response times since last quarter, an additional two maintenance technicians have recently been appointed, so the time taken to carry out emergency repairs is expected to improve in the future. Statistics for non-emergency repairs show an improvement over the last year with response times now below the Highland target.
In addition, the time taken to re-let void properties and the figures for tenancy management shows the average re-let time has improved from 27 days in quarter 4 2016/17 to 15 days in the same period for 2017/18 - below the Highland average of 40 days.
However, despite a drop in homeless presentations during Quarter 4 of 2017/2018, members were advised that the general trend is upward. Most recent figures show that on average homeless applicants in Skye and Lochalsh are likely to spend six months in temporary accommodation.
Cllr Gordon added: “We operate a common housing register and have strong partnership arrangements with the association which means that the new build programme helps us address homelessness pressure.”